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A History of Temple Hatikvah

Temple Hatikvah services the Jewish Community of South Dade: Homestead, Perrine, The Redlands, Cutler Ridge, The Upper Keys and Kendall. Our congregation was initially formed as a Jewish Community Center in 1952 by visionary Jewish pioneers who moved into the "wild southwest" to build a center of Jewish Life. In 1972 we reorganized and affiliated with the Conservative Movement to satisfy the desires of the majority of the membership, which hailed from Naranja and Redland areas. The synagogue continued to grow. As membership topped 300 families, disaster befell us with Hurricane Andrew in August 1992. That hurricane decimated our Center, its building and our congregation with few being spared its fury. Most of our members relocated out of our area but those few who remained showed an indomitable spirit and the will to rebuild our house of worship. Heroes rose to the top, with much credit to Harry Matza and support from Ike Heller of The Greater Miami Jewish Federation. Through their efforts and those of Judy and Larry Creque, Eilat Schmalbach, Sidney and Lillyan Peckett, Robert and Lee Hoffman, and Nettie Petzolt, they joined forces with the young volunteers arranged through the Greater Miami Jewish Federation and The B'nai B'rith Hillel Foundation to lend a loving hand to breathe life back into our Center and synagogue. With the labor of their hands and the love of their hearts we were able to rededicate our reconstructed synagogue on May 23, 1993. We added to our name: Temple Hatikvah, Our Temple of Hope. The congregation again responded to the will of the membership and chose to affiliate with the Reform Movement and remains a liberal congregation today.

Our synagogue and membership are small by many standards but large in heart. We say, give us a chance and we'll make you feel immediately at home. We are heymish (warm and friendly) and welcome all interested singles, couples and families into our midst. We have been blessed with a wonderful spiritual leader and Rabbi, Dr. Jack L. Sparks, who shares his passion for being Jewish with us. A man of intellectual prowess and good humor, you will be charmed as we are with this remarkable and caring human being. Further we are blessed with the wisdom and song of our beloved cantorial soloist, Eilat Schmalbach, whose remarkable voice stirs one's heart. She also offers Hebrew and Judaica classes plus Bar and Bat Mitzvah preparation studies. Eilat and her family have been mainstays in the Homestead community for many years.

Services are conducted at least twice monthly and often include a Shabbat dinner and when appropriate, a holiday celebration. We heartily welcome new friends and visitors and encourage you to join our congregation where the dues are reasonable and where The Board stands ready to accommodate anyone with special circumstances. Additional synagogue information and schedule can be obtained by phoning the Temple at 305-454-4944 or on our website, .

© 2017-2018 Temple Hatikvah / Homestead Jewish Center