Bet Tikvah Congregation Records
Span Dates: 1994-2017
Volume: 3.5 linear feet and 314 MB digital
Bet Tikvah (meaning “House of Hope”) was founded in 1988 as Pittsburgh’s only alternative congregation for gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender Jews and their families and friends. The Bet Tikvah Congregation Records include minute books, prayer and song books, event and service photographs, correspondence, news clippings and born-digital records detailing the Congregation's activities between 1994-2017. The collection also contains information about the relationship between Bet Tikvah and Rodef Shalom Congregation in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh, as well as the larger gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender community. Open Forum Meetings minutes in the collection represent the Congregation’s official board meetings. Records are housed in 4 boxes with one oversized folder along with 314 MB of digital files and are arranged in 7 series: Series I. Projects and Events, Series II. Liturgy, Series III. Newsclippings, Series IV. Newsletters, Series V. Community Relations and Series VI. Membership Information.
Bet Tikvah (meaning “House of Hope”) was founded in 1988 as Pittsburgh’s only alternative congregation for gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender Jews and their families and friends. The congregation conducted outreach both to the larger Jewish community and the larger gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender communities and balanced between spiritual programs and social services. The congregation also participated in numerous cultural events throughout Pittsburgh including the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force’s 1998 Creating Change conference in Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival as well as interfaith services during Pittsburgh’s gay pride celebration.
In 1994, Bet Tikvah began holding services within the Rodef Shalom Congregation synagogue in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh. Bet Tikvah held Sabbath services on the first Friday of each month, holiday services including the High Holidays and Passover, and other events. Member-led services and events were also held at a variety of locations in the Pittsburgh area including a local gay-owned restaurant, the Israel Heritage Room at the University of Pittsburgh, and the homes of congregation members. Bet Tikvah never affiliated with any official branch of Judaism.
Online finding aid available.
This collection is held at the University of Pittsburgh Library as part of the Historic Pittsburgh Collaborative.
Jewish (ethnic, Reform, Reconstructionist, Orthodox) | Pittsburgh | Pennsylvania