Vilna Congregation is home to any Jew regardless of background or level of observance who wants a place to pray on Shabbat and the Jewish Holidays.
Every Friday night, the Vilna congregation ushers in Shabbat with services, song, and celebratory dancing. Before leaving, congregants help anyone attending services that need arrangements for a Shabbat Dinner to find one, often inviting strangers and friends to their own tables. This is part of Vilna inclusive environment that has helped rebuild the Jewish community in the Society Hill neighborhood of Philadelphia, one Jew at a time.
Vilna also offers services on Saturday morning and on Jewish Holidays to members and any Jew who needs a place to pray. Following Saturday morning services, Vilna provides a warm luncheon with traditional Jewish foods, beverages, and insight. While enjoying the Shabbat or Holiday meal, families, friends, guests, newcomers and strangers rejoice together, singing and talking while they eat.
Vilna holds classes on Jewish life and Judaism, and the synagogue has hosts Holiday celebrations and events for Jewish professionals as well as Jews throughout the city.
Originally founded near the turn of the 20th century, Vilna is approaching its 100th anniversary. While Rabbi Menachem Schmidt has helped create the welcoming, inclusive community Vilna has provided for the last 25 years, the building itself requires continuous up-keep.