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Join the Community

Thank you for your interest in becoming a member of Temple Beth-El, one of the Chicago area’s most historic and progressive Reform Jewish congregations and a center for spiritual fulfillment and cultural fellowship for almost 150 years.


When you join the Temple Beth-El community you receive many benefits. Every member is invited to become active and involved with our many programs, teams and groups. There is something for everyone.

When you make your Community Commitment you then have access to:

  • Weekly worship
  • High holidays worship, programs and special events
  • Sisterhood
  • Men’s Club
  • Religious & Hebrew School
  • Preschool
  • Social justice programs and engagement activities
  • Community service opportunities
  • Social events
  • Spiritual events
  • Travel opportunities
  • Pastoral care from our clergy

Thank you for considering Temple Beth-El, we look forward to connecting with you. Please contact Janice Hadesman, Executive Director, (847) 205-9982, ext. 211, jhadesman@templebeth-el.org.


Temple Beth-El Community Commitment

Community Commitment replaces our traditional dues structure and Free Will donations with an annual financial commitment from each member. For existing members this commitment should be based upon previous giving. For new members this commitment should be based upon guidance provided by Temple Beth-El. The recommended sustaining commitment is $2,800 per family.

Our Congregation has adopted this program to streamline member giving, improve the temple’s financial planning, and enable our members to give from their heart with a commitment which is affordable and meaningful. We trust that each household will make a meaningful commitment.

For our 2021–2022 budget, Temple Beth-El must secure $1,100,000 from our Community Commitment to enable the temple to provide the level of services and connections to our temple community that we strive to achieve. We are fortunate that Temple Beth-El has a generous community. We rely on this generosity for the financial sustainability of our congregation and community.

Our 2021–2022 Budget

Financial transparency is essential so that our Temple Beth-El community can make an informed commitment decision that balances our budgetary needs with what is comfortable for each family. Temple Beth-El’s 2021–2022 annual operating budget expenses (excluding school expenses) divided by the number of families in our congregation results in a sustaining amount of $2,800. This sustaining amount is the average needed per family commitment to fund the portion of our operating budget which was traditionally funded through dues and our Free Will donations. We hope that this past generosity continues and that our members commit to contributing as close to or exceeding this sustaining amount. 

Tiers of Commitment

Frequently asked questions

Q: Why did Temple Beth-El change from annual dues and Free Will?

A: We believe, and other synagogues have discovered, that enabling our members to self-direct their annual giving is both a way to provide our current membership with a sense of ownership in the Temple’s wellbeing as well as a competitive way to attract new members. This new approach allows each household to remain connected to our community and accommodates all financial circumstances.

Q: How will members know the amount to commit for the upcoming year?

A: A “Sustaining Amount” has been determined based upon our budgeted expenses for the year, divided by the number of member families. Members will be provided the amount of their giving from prior years. We will request giving at the Sustaining Amount or an increased amount over their last year’s giving, whichever the member is most able to commit and is most generous. Currently, the majority of our members donate an amount in addition to their annual dues. We anticipate that our members will continue their past generosity by committing equal to or greater than their previous giving.

Q: Is the Community Commitment optional?

A: No. We expect that every member will continue to participate in financially supporting our temple. We depend upon our entire community to ensure that our temple has the financial resources to meet our annual budgetary needs. 

Q: Will members’ annual commitment amounts be confidential?

A: Yes. The exact amount of your annual commitment will remain confidential and will not be disclosed to our temple community.

Sat, July 24 2021 15 Av 5781