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Who we are

Embracing Tradition

About Temple Emanuel & how to become a Member

Since our founding in 1913, Temple Emanuel has served its congregants as a Beyt Tefillah (house of worship), a Beyt Midrash (house of study), and a Beyt Knesset (gathering place). Today, this tradition continues as Temple Emanuel welcomes members from a wide range of Jewish and interfaith backgrounds, offering a warm place to explore our Jewish heritage. A Reform congregation, the Temple is a member of the Union for Reform Judaism.


Recommended annual membership dues are $1000 per family and $600 for  individuals. No one will be turned away for financial reasons. Many talented individuals find creative ways to contribute to our congregation. 

Tuition for Sunday School is $300 per child, per grades K-5, and Bar/Bat/B’nai Mitzvah tuition is $1,000 total; usually spread over the 6th and/or 7th grade years.

However, no child will be denied a religious school education on the basis of finances. 

If you have questions about financial arrangements; please reach out to Sara Tomchin or Glenn Silverman.


Beyt Tefillah

A House of Worship

Temple Emanuel observes Shabbat with services at 7:30 every Friday evening, followed by an Oneg Shabbat. The congregation also observes High Holy Days, Festivals, Bar and Bat Mitzvot, life cycle, and special events.

Beyt Midrash

A House of Study

To provide enrichment and education to both children and adults, we provide a full range of learning programs. The Temple Emanuel Religious School serves students from ages three to sixteen, and charges modest fees (scholarships are available). Classes are held on Sunday mornings and include instruction in Jewish traditions, reading Hebrew, music, arts and crafts, library, and supplemental activities such as leading Shabbat services and field trips. Students who are B’nai Mitzvah focus on moral and ethical issues, history, and advanced religious studies. All classes are small, age-appropriate and are conducted by a dedicated director of education. Before becoming Bar or Bat Mitzvah, our children receive six to twelve months of instruction from our spiritual leader. These individual sessions include instruction in reading Hebrew and Torah, liturgical lessons, and community service. All youth must have at least two years of Religious School before beginning these studies.

For adults, we offer educational courses several times a year. All are given at no charge, with nominal fees for support material, and are often open to the public. Adults wishing to learn more about Judaism may also participate in confidential sessions with our spiritual leader.

Beyt Knesset

A Gathering Place

The Temple’s gatherings include a Passover Seder, Sukkot meal, Hanukkah and Purim festivals, and potluck Shabbat dinners. We also host progressive dinners, lead special projects, and provide support to congregants in times of need.



Our Spiritual Leader

Charlie Brown

Charlie Brown has led Temple Emanuel in prayer since 1999. In addition to leading weekly Friday night Shabbat services, Charlie leads holiday services, officiates at life-cycle events, and counsels members and friends of Temple Emanuel. Although Charlie is not a rabbi, he does most of the things that congregational rabbis do and is helped by committed, enthusiastic Temple members.

Charlie studies Torah and receives supervision from Rabbi Stephen Sager as part of the Sicha Rabbinic Mentoring program. He is a member of the Greater Carolinas Association of Rabbis and studies with this group regularly.

Charlie received a Ph.D. in Psychology from Duke University. He also attended Yale University, where he received a BA in Literature, and Columbia University, where he received an MA in English and Comparative Literature.

(704) 865-1541

Temple Emanuel

320 S. South Street, Gastonia, NC 28052
(704) 865-1541