From its humble beginnings in 1964, in an apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Lincoln Square Synagogue (LSS) has grown into an institution that has been a model for Modern Orthodox Judaism.
Over the years the synagogue has developed into a diverse and vibrant Modern Orthodox Congregation that provides religious, social, and educational services and outreach to the unique Jewish community of the Upper West Side of New York. The synagogue strives to be a model in the integration of Halachic Judaism and contemporary life to the broader Jewish community.
On any given Shabbat, LSS provides a variety of options for morning services. In addition, to providing different starting times, each provides a different Shabbat experience and environment. Taking place upstairs in the Lincoln Square Bet Midrash, the Hashkama Minyan provides a simple, no-nonsense early morning service followed by a shiur. The main service is a traditional orthodox service led by Cantor Goffin with an inspiring sermon by Rabbi Robinson, Community Scholar. Elana Stein Hain or Rabbi Elli Ausubel. The Beginners Service, led by Rabbi Buchwald, provides a "No Hebrew Necessary" prayer experience with open, honest discussions around Judaism. Formerly known as the “shiur, cholent and kugel minyan”, the Rabbi Herschel Cohen Amsterdam Memorial Service is the “late minyan” at LSS. While the laid back and informal environment tends to attract a diverse set of congregants, it is really the traditional kugel Kiddush that is the biggest hit!
Newcomers to Lincoln Square will find an array of programs that touch on nearly every area of spiritual and personal growth. Youth groups, Singles Programs, Young Couple Events and a Senior Citizens Program cater to all age and stage-of-life segments of our population. Classes during the week range from the Elementary Hebrew reading level to Book Discussions to Advanced Talmud Study and are open to all who wish to come and learn. In addition, Scholars-in-Residence programs and classes at the Joseph Shapiro Institute feature leading rabbis and educators known nationally and internationally for their scholarship and love of teaching. Lincoln Square Synagogue is dedicated to making all of these events and opportunities accessible to all. Consequently, Sign Language interpreters and braille siddurim are available on request for any and all events by emailing Inclusion@lss.org. Our Youth groups and activities are also open to all, regardless of cognitive or physical challenges. We are determined to meet the needs of every adult and child who would like to join our community.
At our Hebrew School, Jewish tradition is never judgmental, stagnant or monolithic. Tradition is relevant and speaks in a language that its students can relate to and comprehend. Although we are housed in a Traditional Synagogue, our school is non-denominational and successfully attempts to relate to children from all backgrounds and levels of observance.
The Louis Lazar Benevolent Fund provides free meals to those recovering from illness or childbirth and, G-d forbid, those sitting Shiva. The Fund also provides free religious articles (mezuzot, tefillin, seforim, etc) to those in need. Bikur Cholim volunteers visit patients at Roosevelt Hospital every Shabbat. In addition, through clothing drives and a dedicated Chesed fund the synagogue supports many charitable causes in the community and wider afield.