About the 

Ohel Minyan

Our mission

The mission of the Ohel Minyan is to nurture and sustain a halakhically traditional, egalitarian Jewish community in Northampton, MA. We are a community built around our love of communal prayer and a desire to help one another through life stages, challenges, losses, and celebrations.

Our history

The Ohel Minyan met for the first time on Rosh Hashana 5781 (2020). In the midst of a global pandemic, a handful of people in Northampton, MA were desperate to daven (pray) in community after months of isolation. Since then, we have been nourished by davening together. We have grown so much that now we have a weekday morning minyan in addition to meeting on holidays and some Shabbatot. We hope you will be part of the community, whether you live in Northampton or are just passing through.  

For location, or if you have any questions, email us: gabbai@ohelminyan.org.

Ohel Minyan leadership

The Ohel Minyan is powered by volunteer work and good vibes!  A team of Gabbai'im do the big-picture coordination and make sure our operations are in order.  

FAQ

What is "trad-egal"?

The Ohel Minyan is traditional-egalitarian, or "trad-egal." That means most people will experience it as very similar to an Orthodox minyan in terms of the speed, style, and sound of the davening. However, we are fully egalitarian: adult Jews of all genders are counted in a prayer quorum, and seating is not separated by gender.

When does the Ohel Minyan meet? 

Click on the calendar tab for all the details.

Where does the Ohel Minyan meet? 

We meet in the backyards of Ohel minyan members' homes in Northampton, MA. Please contact us for the location of either the daily morning minyan or the Shabbat minyan by writing to gabbai@ohelminyan.org.

What style of davening can I expect at the Ohel Minyan?

While the prayers are in Hebrew and are fast paced, there is always someone there to welcome you and help you find the page. The gabbai'im are happy to explain any parts of the service if you have questions. No prior knowledge of traditional Hebrew prayer needed. There is always some singing that is easy to catch on to. To read more about our davening or what you need to know to be a shaliach tzibbur, a prayer leader, click here.

Will there be food? Is it kosher?

Yes and yes! We typically serve kiddush following Shabbat or yontif morning services. After morning minyan, you might be offered coffee, herring, or cake, since people often bring a little nosh for everyone who made the minyan on a day when they have yahrzeit.

All food served at Ohel minyan events is prepared in a kosher kitchen (or is pre-packaged and has a hekhsher)

To contribute to a kiddush, or to host a yarzheit breakfast, please contact the minyan coordinators at gabbai@ohelminyan.org.

Where can I get some of that great merch?

We have T-shirts, onesies, and other fun stuff! Click here to wear your love for the Ohel Minyan!

Who counts in a minyan at the Ohel?

We welcome anyone who would like to join our community to come to our davening, regardless of religious affiliation. 

For purposes of reaching a quorum, we count people age 12/13+ who are Jewish according to the traditional halakhic definition (a person is Jewish if the person who gave birth to them is Jewish or if they have undergone conversion that includes mikvah, circumcision/hatafat dam brit (as relevant), and acceptance of being bound to perform the commandments).

What are the COVID policies?

We update our COVID guidelines as needed. A new policy will be in place shortly. 

How can I donate?  Are my donations tax-deductible?

You may donate to the Ohel Minyan via Paypal or mail a check made out to The Ohel Minyan. We are a non-profit, and as a religious organization, all donations to the Ohel Minyan are tax deductible.