Chisuk Emuna Congregation
Chisuk Emuna is an active, inclusive, and supportive congregational family where men, women, and children of all backgrounds and levels of observance participate in Jewish living and share life journeys, serve, and strengthen our community.
Rabbi Ron Muroff
Rabbi Muroff is Chisuk Emuna's spiritual leader.
In 2018, he celebrated 25 years filling this role.
Rabbi Muroff is from Toronto where he grew up in an active Conservative family, synagogue, and school. After graduating high school, Rabbi Muroff participated in Nativ, USY’S Leadership Program in Israel and then earned two Bachelors of Arts degrees as a student in the Joint Program between Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary. In 1992, he received a Masters of Arts and Rabbinic Ordination from JTS. Since 1993, Ron Muroff has served as the rabbi of Chisuk Emuna Congregation.
Rabbi Muroff encourages people to take their Judaism personally and supports their efforts to deepen their connections to G-d, the Jewish community, the world, their families and themselves through passionate prayer, study and the doing of mitzvoth/traditional Jewish ritual and ethical practices.
Rabbi Ron Muroff can be reached at 717-232-4851, .
He looks forward to hearing from you.
Chisuk Emuna Board
The Chisuk Emuna community has a variety of interests and needs. All are important. We have undertaken a number of initiatives to build these communities. We are committed to explore ways to implement meditation and bring prayer closer to everyone. I welcome and encourage you to reach out to me with ideas, suggestions and participation. This is how we will build communities.
Judith Hodara - Education
Gary Klein - Building
Ezra Match - Engagement
Michael Green - Recording Secretary
Keith Lampel - Treasurer
David Sternberg - Financial Secretary
S. Chuck Kline
Rabbi: Ron Muroff
Cemetery Association: Sam Yespy
Immediate Past President: Maggie Grotzinger
A joint learning venture of Beth El Temple and Chisuk Emuna Congregation.
Classes for children and adults.
GESHER supplementary religious school is home to approximately 40 students and their families—including some from Temple Beth Shalom, Mechanicsburg—looking to experience a living and vibrant Judaism. The program offers classes for Pre-K to Grade 1 students on Sunday mornings; and for Grade 2-7 students on Wednesday afternoons and Sunday mornings. The Gesher program offers a wide variety of creative educational opportunities for parents (and family members) to learn along with their children in family education programs and Shabbat and Jewish Holiday programming throughout the year.
Director of Lifelong Learning
Hilary Greenberg is an experienced teacher, education director, and education
consultant with master's degrees in Jewish Education and Jewish Studies from Gratz
College and a doctorate in education from the University of Pennsylvania. Hilary has
held leadership roles in the Nurturing Excellence in Synagogue Schools (NESS)
initiative, a holistic and systemic approach to synagogue school improvement, as well
as in the development of ATID, a community-wide combined Hebrew High School
"I'm excited to take on the role of Gesher Director of Lifelong Learning," Hilary said.
"The positive energy and collaborative spirit surrounding this valuable initiative have
been apparent from my first contacts with the rabbis and synagogue leaders. With a
solid educational foundation in place, we can turn attention to imagining and exploring
fresh possibilities aligned with building a dynamic Jewish learning community for people of all ages. I'm happy for the opportunity to become part of the team leading Gesher to the next level."
In her free time Hilary can usually be found hiking, kayaking, skiing, or curled up on the
couch reading a book and watching her cats, Shira and Naomi, bravely pound on the
family room window to scare away the occasional chipmunk, deer or bear hanging
around the backyard.
Chisuk Emuna is a warm and welcoming congregational family founded by Eastern European immigrants in 1883. We provide a traditional, Jewish home to members of the Greater Harrisburg Jewish community from all ages, backgrounds and levels of observance.
The name, Chisuk Emuna means Strength of Faith. This congregation looks forward, in its willingness to welcome newcomers and immediately include them in ritual and congregational activities, as though they had been in the community for many generations.
Affiliated with United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Chisuk Emuna offers religious, educational, cultural, social and youth programs in a hamishe (unpretentious, friendly) atmosphere.
Chisuk Emuna is a “hands-on” Jewish family that partners with other local Jewish institutions to involve all who are interested in Jewish life. Together, Chisuk Emuna members make a difference for our families, community and the world.
Top: The previous location of the synagogue on 5th and Division Streets was opened in 1955. In 2011, the building succumbed to an accidental fire and damaged beyond repair.
Middle: From 2011-2014, under the careful and detailed eyes of the Building Committee and generous funds from within the congregation, a new construction was erected at the corner of Green and Vaughn Streets. During this time, Chisuk Emuna conducted services at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Harrisburg.
Bottom: The joyous celebration and congregational walk, bringing our Torah scrolls and our hearts to their new home on Dedication Day in 2014.
Life Cycle Events
Please contact Rabbi Muroff, if interested in preparing for a Brit Milah, baby naming, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, Wedding or Funeral.
Brit Milah / Baby Naming
When a baby is born or a child is adopted, a ceremony is held to celebrate the child’s arrival and joining the Jewish People. A brit milah (circumcision ceremony) is held on the eighth day of the boy’s life, unless there is a health concern. A baby naming for a newborn daughter is generally held at a service when the Torah is read soon after the birth. The rabbi assists members with arrangements for these lifecycle events, including providing names of experienced mohalim.
A child reaching the age of Jewish majority is a cause for great celebration. A Bar or Bat Mitzvah is the culmination of years of Jewish education in the Yeshiva or Hebrew School, months of work with a tutor and a milestone on a life long journey of Jewish living, learning and growing. Please contact our Director of Education or rabbi for more information about becoming a Bar or Bat Mitzvah at Chisuk Emuna.
Sanctifying the love of a bride and a groom is a personal, family and communal celebration. The rabbi guides couples in the months prior to the wedding. Generally, on the Shabbat before the wedding, the bride and groom come to the synagogue for anaufruf, a traditional celebration in which the couple comes before the Congregation and receives blessings and good wishes. Weddings are held in our synagogue and elsewhere in traditional ceremonies officiated at by our rabbi.
The death of a loved one is a great loss for the family and community. The rabbi comforts the family and helps them to make arrangements with the funeral home and plan the funeral and shiva, the seven-day mourning period that follows the burial.
Generally, members of the synagogue use the services of the Hetrick Funeral Home, whose funeral directors are specially trained to attend to the needs of members of the Jewish community. Funeral services typically take place on the day following the death.
The cemetery is located at 10 34th street in Harrisburg. Plots are available to members. Perpetual care is included. The Chevra Kadisha (the Holy Burial Society) is an organization of our members who perform religious rituals attendant to burials. The Sisterhood provides a shiva meal for mourners. Please contact Sam Yespy of our Cemetery Committee at 717-761-7752 for more information about the cemetery.
Please contact the shul for updated policies on Tahara, Funeral, Burial, and Unveiling in Midst of COVID-19 Pandemic.