Congregation Beit Simchat Torah (CBST) is a vibrant spiritual community and a progressive voice within Judaism. Founded in 1973, CBST attracts and welcomes gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender, queer and straight, individuals and families who share common values. Passionate, provocative, and deeply Jewish, CBST champions a Judaism that rejoices in diversity, denounces social injustice wherever it exists, and strives for the human rights for all people.
CBST is unaffilated with any single movement within Judaism and is continually engaged in holding to a variety of rich traditions, ideas and backgrounds.
…a house of prayer, offering both traditional and liberal services and lifecycle events.
…a house of learning, continually expanding our knowledge and deepening our understanding of our religious and cultural heritage.
…a house of refuge and healing, offering community support and pastoral care.
…a house of conscience-raising, fighting for the full equality of LGBTQ people locally, nationally and internationally.
…committed to Israel and engaged in supporting efforts to secure peace, justice and equality for all.
Since 1973, Congregation Beit Simchat Torah (CBST) has been a home and haven for LGBTQ Jews and our allies, in and around New York City.
For an in-depth understanding, we offer our 40th anniversary book, Changing Lives, Making History: CBST, The First Forty Years written by Rabbi Ayelet S. Cohen with a Foreword by Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum. Changing Lives, Making History is a 320-page, lavishly-illustrated, full-color, hard-cover volume.
Support the CBST Historic Archives or order Changing Lives, Making History.