Next time you’re in beautiful South Carolina’s Lowcountry, come see what we’ve got going for us in Hilton Head Island and Bluffton! Besides our renowned beach, boating, golf, tennis, temperate climate, and natural environment, we also enjoy civilized amenities ~ world-class restaurants and shopping, a hospital, adult courses and lectures, a dozen movie screens, a symphony orchestra, jazz clubs and Congregation Beth Yam!
Beth Yam (“House by the Sea”) is more than a synagogue. It is the focal point for Southern Beaufort County’s multi-faceted Jewish community. Whatever our interests and activities, Congregation Beth Yam’s 307 member families consider the Temple their home base. It is our center of gravity (and often levity). Our 62 affilitate and Associate member families try to visit as often as they can and many visitors to the area often join us for services and activities. We are a Reform Congregation (URJ), officially founded in 1985. We have a Religious School, Sisterhood, and a Men’s Club.
Our demographics resemble your mother’s “little-bit-of-everything” stew: young families with children; active business people and professionals; recent empty nesters; part-time residents; full-time retirees, some of whom have been here for decades. We are a thoroughly mixed bag, and Beth Yam thrives by being all-inclusive. We are sensitive, flexible, open to a range of religious practices and Jewish identities, including many interfaith couples.
In these and other ways, Beth Yam’s diverse congregation has become our “second family.” We are all immigrants down here, and though we enjoy visiting our relatives and roots “up there,” returning home to our family is always a plus. The synagogue and the Jewish community that revolves around it provide the comfort factor that many of us sought when we first discovered this paradise. Would we ever feel comfortable and accepted if we moved here? Thanks to our Beth Yam connections, the answer is an emphatic yes!
Congregation Beth Yam is an integral part of the Hilton Head Island and Bluffton’s social, cultural, and religious scene. Our weekly Friday night Sabbath Services often include outside speakers and the building is used regularly for local educational and cultural events. Services have included a Purim Festival presented by our children, Jazz Services written and performed by members, and the Hilton Head Chorale Society singing Leonard Bernstein’s “Chichester Psalms” under the direction of Mary Woodmansee Green, former conductor of the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra and (naturally) a congregation member. Come visit Beth Yam when you’re in our neighborhood, and discover why we are unique and how we continue to have fun by the beautiful sea!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about the Local Jewish Community, click here.