History or comments
Unaffiliated. All-inclusive. The heart of Mid-Coast Maine’s Jewish community since 1912
Often referred to in the press as “the Jewish Colony”, the small cadre of Jewish immigrants who settled in the Rockland area were well accepted and regarded. In 1879 the mostly Orthodox Jewish community held their first High Holy Day observance, a tradition that has been maintained to present day. When Rockland’s Seventh Day Adventist Church was offered for sale in 1912, the 31 family Jewish Religious Society purchased the building to be their synagogue. That same year the congregation changed its name to Adas Yoshuron.
During the Great Depression of the 1930s membership fell to 20 or fewer families. After World War II there was gradual growth to more than 70 families. The originally Orthodox congregation voted to become Conservative in 1975. In 2004, Adas Yoshuron hired its first full-time rabbi in more than 60 years, Rabbi Amita Jarmon. After spending almost 5 years with the congregation, Rabbi Jarmon moved to Israel in 2009 and Adas Yoshuron now functions with a visiting rabbi, Rabbi Natan Margalit, and lay leaders.
Some families have been affiliated with the Congregation for three or four generations. Today, it is unaffiliated, egalitarian and diverse, welcoming interfaith couples. Adas Yoshuron’s Hebrew school includes students ages 7 to 13. The program teaches basic Hebrew reading, prayer, and Jewish ritual and holidays, as well as subjects such as Jewish history, values, and Torah study. The students participate in several Shabbat services each year. There are also adult education and cultural programs.