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Century Old Synagogue in Monmouth County is Reborn
Congregation Sons of Israel, founded in Asbury Park, N.J.  in 1904, has just celebrated its rebirth at a Gala Ground Breaking Ceremony in the heart of Monmouth County.  The century old Shul, founded by a group of families at the Jersey Shore, has been holding Sabbath and weekend services at the Hillel School Complex on Deal Road, Ocean Twp.  The Congregation was responsible for a number of community institutions, the founding of the Hillel School in 1952, and was a main stay in the creation of the UJA and Israel Bonds in the Jersey Shore area.  Many of the area's leadership were members of the Synagogue over the past century.

(Left to right)  Rabbi Yosef Carlebach,
Shul President Brian Goot, Rick and Robin Schottenfeld, Accepting the Award  Plaque.

In the last decade, efforts were made to find a suitable property in an area that is conducive to young families and growth.  The Synagogue Board searched and it was a unanimous decision to move to the Wayside area of Ocean Township, as this was the choice area for young couples and families, and it was an area that did not have any Jewish Synagogue presence.  A Minyan and Hebrew School were formed, and has been meeting regularly in the Hillel School on Deal Rd.  Over the years, many of the Shul officers endeavored to find the right property that would satisfy the needs of the Shul family, and comply with municipal zoning regulations.

After a number of years, the Synagogues spiritual leader, Rabbi Yosef Carlebach approached the Mayor of Ocean Township, Bill Larkin and requested his assistance.  The Mayor traveled the Township with the Rabbi numerous times.  Finally, the Mayor said to the Rabbi, "the solution is right in your back yard."

Standing left to right, (first row) Rabbi Mendel Greenberg,
Rabbi Leibel Schapiro, Mayor Bill Larkin, Rabbi Yosef Carlebach, Mrs. Ruth Hyman, Freeholder-Director Barbara McMara, Rick Schottenfeld, Robin Schottenfeld, Davina Feingold, Leslie Feingold, Barbara Schottenfeld.
Back Row (left to right)  Brian Goot, Andrew Maze, Esq.,
Norman Colten, Danny Kahane, Donald Epstein, Chaim Babad, Jerry Weiner, and Joel Glastein.

The Mayor felt that the correct place for the Synagogue would be on Poplar Place, adjacent to the Hillel School.  The Chairman Morris Franco, and the Board of Trustees of the Hillel School,  agreed to the concept and a contract was drawn.

The Groundbreaking Ceremony was held on Friday, Nov. 27th and construction is now underway for a 15,000 square foot complex featuring a Synagogue, classrooms, social hall, kosher kitchen, offices, and a Women's Mikvah.

At the Groundbreaking Ceremony, a small miracle occurred. One of the invited guests, Monmouth County Freeholder Director Barbara J. McMorrow arrived, and was talking with Rabbi Yosef Carlebach.  She related how she had once been in the Hillel School when it was still located on Comstock St. in Asbury Park.  The rabbi was surprised to hear that the freeholder-director was in the Hillel School as a student and that she had learned to "davven and do mitzvos".

Upon further discussion, it turned out that Barbara's parents were leading members of the congregation in the fifties.  Rabbi Carlebach said that during the past night he discovered an old book in his study that he had never seen before.  The book contained Synagogue Bulletins from the fifties.  Upon opening the book, the freeholder-director and the rabbi were stunned to immediately find the names of her parents prominently listed.

(Standing at construction site, Donald Epstein, Danny Kahane, Rabbi Yosef Carlebach, and Rick Schottenfeld

There was not a dry eye at the GroundBreaking Ceremony as the Freeholder-Director Barbara J. McMorrow told the story that had just unfolded.  The Freeholder-Director was re-introduced to the crowd as "Rivkah", and promised to visit and become active to her 'old home' -  the Shul of Wayside.

More than one hundred fifty members and supporters of the Shul were present to see the Groundbreaking and hear words of inspiration from Mayor Bill Larkin, Brian Goot, Rabbi Yosef Carlebach, Danny Kahane, and Donald Epstein.  A special presentation was made to Rick and Robin Schottenfeld for their friendship and support in the naming of the Main Synagogue, the Schottenfeld-Feingold Shul.

The new Congregation Sons of Israel - Chabad invites the entire community to visit and enjoy any of its prayer services, and educational programs.  For further info, for new membership, or to get Building Dedication opportunities, please call Rabbi Yosef Carlebach or Brian Goot at 732-896-0770 or


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