FAQs

What are the office hours for Beth El’s main office?

The Beth El office is open:

  • Monday through Thursday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Friday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm
  • Sunday when Religious School is in session from 9:00 a.m. to noon

The office is closed on Jewish holidays and major federal holidays. Office closings are announced on the Beth El e-mail list, the Calendar insert in the Scroll, and can be found by calling 301-652-2606 (Dial 2 after the announcement).

Where can I park?

Our parking lot has limited capacity. If the lot is full, please be advised that:

  • Residential street parking is available, subject to parking restrictions. We encourage everyone to park on streets on the other side of Old Georgetown Road where spaces are more plentiful. Please respect our neighbors and do not park within five feet of driveways.
  • Subject to church activity (no parking on Sundays, for example), the upper parking lot only of the Bethesda United Methodist Church at Old Georgetown Road and Huntington Parkway (diagonally across from Beth El) is available as well.

Whom do I contact to make a contribution to Beth El in honor/memory of someone?

Contact Hattie Goodman, our receptionist, at 301-652-2606, ext. 301.

Whom do I contact to make arrangements for sponsoring a breakfast following a weekday morning service or the early Shabbat service?

Contact Hattie Goodman, our receptionist, at 301-652-2606 ext. 301.

I would like to make an appointment with one of the clergy.

Rabbi Harris, Rabbi Werbin, and Hazzan Fradkin all maintain their own calendars; if you wish to meet with them, please contact them directly: 301-652-2606.

  • Rabbi Greg Harris, ext. 305
  • Rabbi Fabian Werbin, ext. 329
  • Hazzan Asa Fradkin, ext. 317

How do I know what is happening at Beth El during inclement weather?

On a day when a class or program is delayed or cancelled, a message is recorded by 7:00 a.m. on 301-652-2606 (dial 2 after the announcement). Should inclement weather begin after 7:00 a.m., then the message will be recorded as soon as possible. The message will be updated during the day as needed.

If Montgomery County Public Schools are closed for inclement weather, then Beth El Preschool (BEPS) and Religious School are closed as well and most synagogue events are cancelled.

If the county schools have a delayed opening, BEPS will start at 10:15 a.m. and Religious School classes will take place as usual. Call the office regarding other events. All religious services take place as scheduled.

Can I leave a message when the main office is closed?

Yes, you can either leave a message on the main phone line (301-652-2606) or enter the extension number of the person you wish to reach and leave a message if he/she is not in.

Whom do I contact if I have a question about my Beth El account?

All questions related to congregants’ accounts and monthly statements should be directed to our comptroller, Ian Rothman, at 301-652-2606, ext. 304. Ian also manages the standing grocery scrip orders and questions about paying your Capital Campaign pledge.

What do I do if I am in a difficult financial situation and cannot make my payments to Beth El?

If you find yourself in a difficult financial situation and wish an adjustment to your dues, school tuition, etc., please contact Sheila Bellack, our executive director, at 301-652-2606, ext. 306 to discuss your concern. She will work with you, in total confidence, and find a workable solution.

What is the Beth El listserv?

Beth El maintains an electronic list to which we send messages twice each week, providing information on upcoming shul events and services and other information of interest. The list is also used to notify congregants of funerals and shiva information.

It’s is a great way to stay up-to-date on Beth El happenings and learn of any last minute changes or additions to our calendar.

To have something included on the listserv, send the information to Sara Greenbaum.

I would like information about purchasing a cemetery plot in the Beth El section of the Judean Memorial Gardens in Olney.

It is always less stressful to make cemetery arrangements before you need to; this is called “pre-need.” Currently, plots cost $1,800 each, which is significantly less than if you bought it directly from the cemetery. If you would like further information about purchasing a cemetery plot in the Beth El section at Judean Gardens, please contact Sheila Bellack, our executive director, at 301-652-2606, ext. 306.

How do I get information included in the Shabbat announcement handout that the ushers distribute at the door on Shabbat?

Please contact Sara Greenbaum at 301-652-2606, ext. 302. The deadline is Wednesday morning (sometimes earlier if it’s a short week). Please note that due to limited space in the announcements, we sometimes have to edit material or hold it for a future week.