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Since 1922, Congregation B’nai Israel (CBI) located in Monmouth County, has served as a religious, cultural and educational synagogue for Jewish residents of the greater Red Bank area. Multi-generational and egalitarian, CBI is a place for prayer, spirituality, shared observance, Judaic learning and social mingling...a place to honor life-cycle events and celebrate Jewish holidays. A member of the conservative movement, CBI is dedicated to guiding our children and ourselves to appreciate the values, customs and history of our Jewish heritage, to live a life of mitzvot, to support Israel and to transmit the love of Judaism and pride in our Jewish identity to succeeding generations - L'Dor Va'Dor.








Nov 18 2022


The Death of Sarah

I officiated at my first funeral 35 years ago. I still recall the phone call I received from the deceased’s daughter. “Rabbi”, she said, “I just need to let you know that on the day of the funeral, my brother, who I haven’t spoken to in years, may show up. And I am afraid that he will start a fight!” The woman was quite beside herself at the thought of a family squabble breaking out during the service. If I recall, the brother did show up, and nothing untoward happened.

I have heard variations of this throughout my rabbinate. To be honest, it has happened more than once in my own family. Funerals often expose the fissures that are part of every family’s complex weave of relationships. Our task as mourners is to learn the wisdom to seek repair and reconciliation, when possible.

The Torah portion for this Shabbat, Hayei Sarah (the death of Sarah) shows that family strife during times of mourning is part of the human experience from ancient times. When Sarah dies and Abraham mourns her, his son Isaac does not attend the funeral.

Why? Some commentators speculate that he is so emotionally hurt by the experience of his near-sacrifice at Abraham’s hand that he is incapable of sharing with his father in mourning his mother.

Years later, we are told that Isaac, together with his brother Ishmael, join to bury Abraham. Perhaps in the intervening years he has gained the wisdom and insight to forgive and reconcile with his parents; and to move forward from the traumatic experience of his childhood.

Shabbat Shalom

Rabbi Doug Sagal

High Holy Day Recordings



2022/5783 Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur Services and Sermons

We thank all our CBI members and guests for joining us in-person and on live-stream during High Holy Day services this year. 

To see our services and hear the Rabbi's sermons, please follow the links below:

Rosh Hashanah Services and Sermons

 Yom Kippur Services and Sermons

CBI Rumson

2022/5783 Kol Nidre and Yom Kippur Recorded Services and Sermons


  • CBI is listed as an eligible charity on AMAZON SMILE! Go to Amazon Smile and select Congregation B'nai Israel (make sure it's our address) as your designated charity and make your purchases. Bookmark the Amazon Smile link so you can easily go through Amazon Smile when shopping.
Thu, December 8 2022 14 Kislev 5783