Established in 1984, SCFL has maintained a proud and distinct set of minhagim, cultural standards and meaningful values that reflect the joyous approach to living that is distinctively and deeply Jewish and yet still accepting of and connected to the world around us.
Like many Sephardic congregations in North America, the member community of SCFL is religiously diverse – made up of families who are observant; families who are traditional but not fully observant; families who have more of a cultural affiliation; identify as Jewish and participate in annual Jewish rituals and milestones (Yom Kippur, Passover, Hannukah, Purim etc.); and families who are on the periphery of the Jewish community. The one thread that ties all of these families together is that when they choose to attend religious services, they will attend them at SCFL. Accordingly, SCFL is an inclusive congregation, one that does not create fissures within its own community, but one that seeks opportunities to bring the members of its community together.
Sephardic Congregation of Fort Lee maintains deep connection to our heritage manifested ritually through paytanut, the knowledge and practice of its liturgy, which is unique even among Sephardic congregations. Culturally SCFL is connected through language (French, Judeo-Arabic), its foods, its love of family and its deep respect for the idea of tradition itself. Taking care of the members of the community is a central part of the congregation’s values, passed down to children and grandchildren.