Who We Are

Our History

Har Sinai Temple is the oldest congregation in the area. We began in 1857 with the formation of the Har Sinai Cemetery Association in Trenton, New Jersey. Har Sinai Hebrew Congregation grew from the Cemetery Association and began formal services in 1860. Services were held in the old Chancery Building on the corner of West State Street and Chancery Lane. During a founder’s meeting in July 1860, the congregation decided to incorporate and purchase our first permanent house of worship on North Montgomery Street. The building was retrofitted as a synagogue and dedicated in 1866.
In July 1903, Har Sinai sold its original building and purchased a lot on Front and Stockton Streets in Trenton. Our new Temple was dedicated in 1904 and shortly after the dedication of the new building, our congregation adopted Reform Judaism. Changes in the religious practices of the congregation saw the return of the chanting of the kiddush and the use of the shofar instead of a coronet for Rosh Hashanah. In February 1922, Har Sinai joined the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, gaining its official status as a Reform Congregation.
A quarter of a century passed and Har Sinai needed to expand, particularly to accommodate the growing enrollment in our religious school. In 1925, Har Sinai purchased a lot on Bellevue Avenue and erected a new structure. The cornerstone was laid in late 1929, and the dedication ceremonies took place the following September.
In December 2006, after nearly 80 years in our urban Trenton location, Har Sinai purchased our current home in Hopewell Township and completed the sale of our historic Bellevue Avenue property. The following year coincided with our 150th anniversary, and we broke ground on our current home which includes a religious school, offices, and multi-purpose chapel.
Today, our congregants come not only from the Trenton area but from all over both Mercer and Hunterdon Counties in NJ, and from Bucks County in PA.