S H A B B A T   S E R V I C E   T E M P L A T E

What Is This?

A lot of young Reform Jews find that using a standard printed prayerbook for weekly Shabbat services isn't as fulfilling or meaningful an experience as compiling one's own services. Many people are familiar with this sort of "creative service" from camps or NFTY or other youth groups. By far the most aggravating part of creating a creative service is the physical work of putting together the printed service: the various English or Hebrew readings, the traditional prayers, additional songs, etc.

For about four years in the Brown-RISD Reform Jewish Chavurah, I've been producing services really easily and (be it ever so humble) attractively using this little service template. It has the prayers that we traditionally do Friday nights, and it makes adding readings and songs easy. Other people have been nagging me to make this available to the world at large, and I'm finally doing that.

So here it is. It consists of the following prayers in Hebrew, Transliteration, and Translation:

  1. Shabbat Candle Blessings
  2. Reader's Kaddish
  3. Bar'chu
  4. Ma'ariv Aravim
  5. Ahavat Olam
  6. Sh'ma and V'ahavta
  7. Mi Chamocha
  8. V'shamru
  9. Avot v'Imahot
  10. G'vurot
  11. Kedusha
  12. Shalom Rav
  13. Silent Prayer/Y'hiyu
  14. Aleinu
  15. Mourner's Kaddish

What You'll Need

A word processing application that can read and translate RTF (Rich Text Format) files. I created this document using Word 6 for Macintosh, but I imagine it should work fine in any application that can handle RTF. The side-by-side text in this version is accomplished using tables, so make sure your word processor can handle that.

Fonts: The English and transliterated Hebrew text is all in Times, which I think everyone should have a version of. The Hebrew uses a shareware PostScript font called ShalomOldStyle. You can download a Macintosh version or a Windows version here.

How To Use This

Once you've downloaded the fonts and the RTF file, open the file in Word. You'll see all of the prayers, in Hebrew, Transliteration, and English. The Hebrew and Transliteration should run side by side.

All of the text formatting is controlled by the various styles in the document. All of the Hebrew text is in Hebrew style, all of the transliteration is in Transliteration, etc. If you don't like the English font I've chosen, for example, just go ahead and change the style. I won't mind.

If you want to add English readings, just type them in the spaces between the prayers. English readings should be formatted with English style. I've left a blank paragraph in English style between each paragraph for you. If you want to give credit for one of your readings to your sources, just put the source in the handy Attribution style right after the reading. Easy.


I'd love to know if this is useful to anyone. If you use it and like it or have any problems with it, please let me know (my email address is below). Have a good time.

For convenience, here are all the files you need:

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Last modified: 15 June 1998 by mharvey@netspace.org