Date Original

1966 November 18


Program guide to the rededication of the Congregation B'nai Israel in Little Rock, Arkansas at its one hundredth year anniversary.

Biographical/Historical Note

The Congregation B'nai Israel was originally named 'The Little Rock Congregation' before it was officially formed on November 11, 1866, at which time the name changed to B'nai Israel (Sons or Children of Israel). Meetings were held in the Ditter Building at Main and Water streets with ninety charter members, and 214 families and pioneer members or individual persons. The Congregation of B'nai Israel moved from worshipping in rented rooms to building a beautiful temple at Broadway and Capital Avenue in Little Rock in 1897, where the house of worship for the Little Rock Jewish community then stood for 70 years. The current home of the congregation was dedicated in 1975 and is located on Rodney Parham Road, Little Rock. The congregation will be celebrating its 150th anniversary in November of 2016.


One hundred years
1866 1966
5627 5727
NOVEMBER 18, 1966
6 KISLEV, 5727
Order of Service
Opening Prayer:
God and Father, we have entered Thy sanctuary on this Sabbath
of Centennial Celebration to hallow Thy name and to offer unto
Thee prayers of Thanksgiving.
Thy glory is rehearsed above the Heavens. The earth is Thine
and they that dwell therein. All creation proclaims Thy majesty.
Though a thousand years in Thy sight are but as yesterday when
it is past, we are gathered in Thy house, O Lord, to thank Thee
for the tokens of Thy goodness toward us, for Thy blessing of
a Century.
Be with us O Lord as Thou wast with our Fathers. May this sacred
occasion rekindle within us the consciousness of Thy Presence, as
we rededicate ourselves unto Thee, unto Israel and unto all man-
Opening Hymn:
The Lord of all, who reigned supreme
Ere first creation's form was framed;
When all was finished by His will
His name Almighty was proclaimed.
And should these forms no more exist
He still will rule in majesty.
He was, He is, He shall remain;
His glory never shall decrease.
Alone is He beyond compare,
Without division or ally,
Without initial date or end,
Omnipotent He rules on high.
He is my God, my living God;
To Him I flee when tried in grief;
My banner high, my refuge strong,
Who hears and answers when I call.
My spirit I commit to Him,
My body, too, and all I prize;
Both when I sleep and when I wake,
He is with me, I shall not fear.
WELCOMING THE SABBATH - Mr. and Mrs. Arnold L Mayersohn
In the spirit of our ancient tradition that hallows and unites Israel
in all lands and all ages, do we now kindle the Sabbath lights.
Blessed art Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who hast
sanctified us by Thy laws and commanded us to kindle the Sabbath
Let us praise God with this symbol of joy, and thank Him for the
blessings of a hundred years, for life and strength, for homes and
love and friendship, for the discipline of our trials and temptations,
for the happiness that has come to us out of our labors.
Praised be Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, who has
created the fruit of the vine.
Blessed are Thou, O Lord our God, ruling spirit of the universe,
who has kept us in life, sustained us and brought us to the celebra-
tion of this joyous occasion.
Bo-ruch a-to A-do-noy Elo-he-nu Me-lech Ho-o-lom she-he-ch'yo-nu
v'kiy'mo-nu v'hi-gi-o-nu la-z'man ha-zeh.
Baw-r'-hoo es ah-doh-noy ham'voh rawh
Praise ye the Lord, to whom all praise is due.
Baw rooh ah-doh-noy hawm'voh rawh l'oh lawn vo-ed
Praised be the Lord to whom all praise is due forever and ever
Almighty and merciful God, Thou hast called Israel to Thy service and
found him worthy to bear witness unto Thy truth among the peoples
of the earth.
Be with us as Thou wast [SIC] unto Thy truth among the peoples
of the earth. Be with us as Thou wast [SIC] with our fathers. Give us grace
to fulfill this mission with zeal tempered by wisdom and guided by
regard for other men's faith. May our life prove the strength of our
own belief in truths we proclaim. May our bearing toward our
neighbors, our faithfulness in every sphere of duty, our compassion for
the suffering and out patience under trial shoe that He whose law we
obey is indeed the God of all goodness, the father of all men, that to
serve Him is perfect freedom and to worship Him the soul's purest
happiness. In this spirit may ever rise and proclaim Thy unity.
Sh'mah Yis-raw-ayl Ah-doh-noy eh-loh-hay-noo Ah-doh-noy
Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God, the Lord is One.
Baw-rooh shaym k'vohd mahl-hoo-soh l'oh-lawm vow-ed
Praised be His name whose glorious kingdom is forever and ever.
Thou shalt love the Lord, thy God, with all thy heart, with all thy
soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command
thee this day, shall be upon thy heart. Thou shalt teach them
diligently unto thy children, and shalt speak of them when thou
liest [SIC] down, and when thou risest [SIC] up. Thou shalt bind them for a
sign upon thy hand, and they shall be for frontlets between thine
eyes. Thou shalt write them upon the doorposts of thy house and
upon thy gates: That ye may remember and do all My command
-ments and be holy unto your God.
By the shores of the Red sea long ago, by the rivers of Babylon and
Europe throughout the ages and for a hundred years along the banks
of the Arkansas, Thy children have acknowledged Thy sovereign
power and exclaimed:
Who is like unto Thee, O Lord? Who is like unto Thee, glorious
in holiness, awe-inspiring, working wonders? The Lord shall reign
forever and ever.
Centuries ago King Solomon dedicated the Temple in Jerusalem, a
house of God to symbolize a link between heaven and earth. A
century ago our forefathers in Little Rock congregated together
to do likewise. Today, as we begin our second century we recall
Solomon's words: "May the Lord our God be with us, as He was
with our fathers; may He not forsake us. May all the peoples of
the earth know that the Lord is God; there is no other."
And it is written that the word of the Lord cam to Solomon about
the house that he was building: "If you follow My teaching and
live by My commandments, I will fulfill My promise to you as I
said to David your father. I will dwell among the children of
Israel, and will not forsake My people Israel."
Rabbi: Let us affirm that our Temple will always be a House of Prayer.
Together we shall come to examine what we are in the light of
what we should be, aware that it is God before whom we stand.
Together we shall offer the service of our heart in praise of God
for His blessings. Together we shall renew our faith, seeking com-
fort and strength.
Let us affirm that our Temple will always be a House of Learning.
Together we shall learn who we are and whence we come. Together
we shall seek a glimpse of our destiny. Through knowledge and
practice of our tradition we shall transform ourselves into a con-
gregation, transmitting our Jewish heritage with love to our children.
Let us affirm that our Temple will always be a House of Assembly.
Together we shall share joy and sorrow. May none of us live in
isolation, for we covenant with God as a community. Here
we shall maintain that covenant together.
If we rededicate ourselves, this is no futile dream. We shall find the
way to realize our forefathers, make of our assemblage a congregation
and of our building a sanctuary.
So that all who pass this way may say: "Surely the Lord is in
this place; this is a House of God."
Choir "Lift Up Your Heads"
Together we pray on this great and festive Centennial Sabbath Our
God and God of our fathers, with gratitude and joy we rededicate
ourselves to Thee.
Help us, O Lord, to realize the unity of Thy Creation. As Thou art
One, so must our lives be one. May the integrity of our lives reflect
Thy Oneness, wherever we are, whatever we do.
May we never be guilty of affirming Thee in this sanctuary, only to
deny Thee elsewhere. Help us to know when our lives are contradic-
tions, when we war with ourselves and with others, when we undo the
good we have done.
May we be whole-hearted in revering Thee, O Lord. Remove from us
all that is hateful, and bring us near to all that Thou lovest. May our
search for sanctity as a Kingdom of Priests and a Holy People continue,
morning and evening, all the days of our lives. And let us say: Amen.
CENTENNIAL ANTHEM "How Lovely Is Thy Dwelling Place"
Johannes Brahms
THE CENTENNIAL CHARGE Rabbi Maurice N. Eisendrath
President, Union of American Hebrew Congregations
ADORATION AND KADDISH Union Prayer Book Page 71
All the world shall come to serve Thee,
And bless Thy glorious name,
And Thy righteousness triumphant
The islands shall acclaim.
Yea the peoples shall go seeking
Who knew Thee not before, And the ends of earth shall praise Thee,
And tell Thy greatness o'er.
With the coming of Thy kingdom
The hills will shout with song
And the islands laugh exultant,
That they to God belong.
And through all Thy congregations,
So loud Thy praise shall ring, That the utmost peoples, hearing,
Shall hail Thee crowned King.
BENEDICTION Dr. Ira E. Sanders, Rabbi Emeritus
A reception follows immediately in the Lasker Auditorium.
The congregation is requested to give the Clergy
time to form a receiving line.

Physical Description

4 pages written front and back, 6" x 9.25"


Religion; Judaism; Jewish Community; Anniversaries; Celebrations

Geographical Area

Little Rock, Pulaski County (Ark.)


English and Hebrew


MS.000107, Box 1, Folder 11

Resource Type



Kauffman-Etheridge collection, MS.000107


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

Congregation B'nai Israel 100th Anniversary, Kauffman-Etheridge collection, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


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Congregation B'nai Israel 100th Anniversary