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150th Celebration Events 

In 1858, a small group of Jews envisioned a home on the island port city of Galveston. Since that time, Congregation B’nai Israel has been a lighthouse for those seeking a safe harbor in this world. To mark these years of light and love, we held these celebrations:

Friday Evening, 27 July 2018:

A Special Erev Shabbat Service with Union of Reform Judaism Leader and Other Dignitaries

Starting at 6:00 pm, join the CBI Family in welcoming in both the Sabbath day and the 150th Anniversary of the Congregation (officially, 26 July 1868). Helping to give voice to the meaning of this historical moment will be various dignitaries, including a top leader with the Union of Reform Judaism, whose stirring presentation included depositing a item into the Anniversary Time Capsule (which was buried at the end of the year). Following this beautiful ceremony, the CBI Family celebrated a communal Shabbat meal inside our Social Hall.

Saturday Morning, 28 July 2018:

Torah Procession from Historic Temple (22nd St. & Ave. I) to Current Temple (30th St. & Ave.O) with Naming Ceremony -- "Rabbi Jimmy Kessler Dr."

There was a one-hour open house of our historic Temple, as people assemble for a most momentous Torah Procession with Galveston's civic and religious leaders. Our Torah Procession will began with words shared by CBI's Rabbi. From there, we will march to CBI's current home at 3008 Avenue O. Once there, a naming ceremony was held for the naming of  "Rabbi Jimmy Kessler Dr.," in honor of Rabbi Jimmy's 36 years (double-chai anniversary) of sacred service for the betterment of this city.

Saturday Evening, 28 July 2018:

"An Acoustic Evening with Matisyahu: A Benefit Concert for Congregation B'nai Israel"

The Grand 1894 Opera House, Galveston

With Billboard Top 40 hits like “King Without a Crown” and “One Day,” Matisyahu beautiful blends the contemporary rhythms of reggae and hip-hop with the more traditional disciplines of jazz’s scat singing and Judaism’s chazzanut (prayer chanting). Regardless of your generation or faith heritage, this boundary-breaking acoustic evening with Matisyahu touched our souls. Proceeds from this concert went towards CBI's mission of strengthening Jewish identities and Jewish values in the greater Galveston Bay Area, as we fulfill the prophetic vision of "doing justice, loving mercy and walking humbly with God." (Micah 6:8)

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