Welcome to Temple Sinai


Simcha Torah

Simchat Torah at Temple Sinai

Temple Sinai is an egalitarian Reform Jewish congregation with special emphasis on education and social action projects. Our rabbi is Arthur Z. Steinberg. Founded in December 1953, this small but very active Temple is located in the Churchland section of Portsmouth, VA.

Some of the special features of our beautiful facility are an example of modern 1950s architecture designed by Glenn Yates, a social hall with a large stage, a full kitchen (where the biblical dietary laws are observed), a fully stocked Temple gift shop, the unique Bonk-Rivin Holocaust Library, and an intimate, “haymisha” sanctuary.

Friday evening Erev Shabbat services start at 7:30 PM. On the first Friday of every month we have a Family Service and the children of our religious school are frequent participants. Once each month, we have a Torah & Music service which includes a Torah Reading service and our own musical group, The Sinai Songsters, leading the congregation in the singing of the liturgy. We are also proud of our bi-monthly creative services featuring the work and participation of our senior youth group, the Sinai of Portsmouth Temple Youth (SOPTY).

We take great pride in our Sunday morning educational program for students of pre-school age through the 10th grade. The Portsmouth United Religious School (PURS) serves the children of our Temple and those of our neighboring Conservative congregation. A special feature of PURS is the award-winning Family Education Program where, 5 or 6 times a year, we offer unique family-oriented learning sessions for our members.

Sinai’s other activities include an active and dynamic Social Action program, a mid-week Hebrew School, regular adult education programs, and various cultural and social events in addition to Shabbat and Holiday services.

Our philosophy is rooted in the modern Reform tradition, and we are a member of URJ – the Union for Reform Judaism.

Temple Sinai
4401 Hatton Point Road
Portsmouth, VA 23703-4015



Rabbi: Rabbi Arthur Z. Steinburg
President: Bonnie Kerner
Religious School Principal: Kitty Wolf