Our shul was named Adath Israel because several of our founders in 1949 were immigrants from the Adass Yisroel Shul in Berlin. It was one of the breakaway (Austritt) Orthodox shuls in Germany in the 19th century when the Reform was taking control of many Jewish communal institutions. The Rav of Adass Yisroel in Berlin was R' Azriel Hildesheimer, who is one of the founders of the "Torah im Derech Eretz" school of Orthodoxy, along with R' Shimshon Raphael Hirsch in Frankfurt. R' Hildesheimer's legacy of intellectually rigorous, cosmopolitan Orthodoxy is very much part of the identity and practice of our community in San Francisco
Adath Israel was founded in 1949 as people began moving to the western half of San Francisco, and to the newly built houses of the Sunset District. The community grew as a number of Holocaust survivors and refugees made their way to San Francisco and settled in the Sunset District. Starting in a living room, the shul grew and moved to a storefront, and eventually built its own magnificent building in the early sixties on the corner of 26th Avenue and Noriega Street. In 1967, Rabbi Jacob Traub was hired, and under his stewardship the community became an influential part of Jewish life in San Francisco. As the membership was aging, in 2005 we hired Rabbi Joshua Strulowitz to reinvigorate the community. During his tenure, our community underwent a rebirth, with a younger generation of leaders emerging who have changed the face of Adath Israel. We have developed a reputation as a warm and welcoming community with members from all over the world, reflecting the international flavor of San Francisco, as well as innovative and creative opportunities for Jewish growth for all ages.
These interviews are part of a series with founders and some central members of Congregation Adath Israel.
In this interview, Jonathan Harris speaks with Rabbi Joshua Strulowitz (2005-2012) about his time as Rabbi of Adath Israel.
In this interview, Tamas Makany asked one of the founders and former president of the shul, Martin Sosnick about the birth of the community of Adath Israel.
In this interview, Tamas Makany talks with David Henkin about his time as a ba'al koreh at Adath Israel, as well as his subsequent role in founding the Mission Minyan.
In this interview, Tamas Makany asked the former Rabbi of the shul, Rabbi Jacob Traub about the early history of the congregation, other Jewish communities, social events and his first years as a young rabbi in the 1960s in the Sunset district of the City. Rabbi Traub also talks about why should someone consider joining the community of Adath Israel.
In this interview, Tamas Makany asked Joey Eckstein about growing up at Adath Israel.