Dear Friends,

Israel is currently at war. Our brothers and sisters in virtually every part of the country will spend the night listening for sirens to instruct them when to head to their bomb shelters.  Millions of infants and young children will be woken in the middle of the night and rushed into dank shelters under a hail of missiles from terrorists in Gaza.  This operation started after Israel urged Hamas to halt rocket fire after 48 hours of warning.  As a response, they increased their fire and sought out new targets throughout Israel.  It is so very painful to watch what is happening, but I take comfort that in the past, when our enemies came to destroy us, there were no warning systems, there was no missile defense system, and there was no army to protect the Jewish people.  Thank G-d for the IDF, for Israel’s bold leaders and for the courage of Israel’s citizens to stand tall in the face of terror.  Today we pray for the IDF, for all the citizens of Israel, and for the peace of Jerusalem.

If you would like to help Israel in her time of need, here are some organizations that need our help:




Rabbi Barras

Welcome to Temple Beth El

We are so excited to welcome you to our sacred community! At Temple Beth El you will find a community that is eager to embrace you and welcome you into our congregational family. As the oldest and largest synagogue in Lee County, we take special pride in our history as well as our future. Our outstanding staff,  dedicated lay leadership, and involved membership will make you feel as if you are part of a large, extended family.

Our congregation is open and welcoming to all who seek to explore the principles and beliefs of Reform Judaism. Our membership is made up of those who were born Jewish, those who chose Judaism, interfaith families and anyone whose spiritual path has led them to our gates.

Temple Beth El is dedicated to the principles of the Torah and the values we derive from them. We take our cue from the ancient prophets who taught us to seek justice and walk humbly before the Lord. We understand that we are responsible to fulfill the obligation of tikun olam, repairing our world, through the performance of mitzvot in our congregation and in the greater community around us. We are excited for you to join us in this sacred endeavor.

At Temple Beth El you will find a myriad of activities that will contribute to your spiritual growth and social fulfillment. From tots to seniors, we offer outstanding programming, a wealth of educational opportunities, and various events that range from the purely social to sublimely spiritual. We are here for you, and we are so excited to welcome you to our family!

Rabbi Jeremy Barras