Our story

Or Chayim is a growing, start-up Jewish congregation of LGBTQ people and allies.

A start-up Shabbat & holidays community experience for unaffiliated, traditional and Orthodox LGBTQ Jews. Located in New York City’s Upper West Side.

  • Spiritually uplifting, traditional, Orthodox-style minyan services, with minimalist mechitza
  • Hot kiddush including chulent, kugel, israeli salad and cookies. B.Y.O.K.B.
  • 3 course kosher Shabbat & holidays dinner

We began on February 28, 2014, on a wintry night, when more than 50 attendees gathered to daven at 6pm and then stayed for over two hours afterward schmoozing and gathering around a hot kiddush. 30 people then sat down for our first Shabbat dinner.

The “LGBT Minyan” has continued each month, plus a special Shavuot night service & dinner, Rosh Hashanah night service kiddush & dinner, YomKippur Neilah & break-fast, Chanukah party and two Shabbat day services.

The first 24 services have attracted over 400 unique visitors to our Congregation. We have more than 600 interested followers between our email list and social media. We have served approximately 1500 Shabbat and holiday meals.  Our attendance has averaged 70 attendees each time.

Founded by Oliver Rosenberg, a graduate of Yeshiva University, who currently resides in New York City’s Upper West Side.

Click here for list of upcoming events



Click here for our first press coverage in Haaretz

the jewish week logo

Click here for The Jewish Week’s honoring of Oliver Rosenberg for being one of the 36 under 36 for his work at Or Chayim.

Stand Up for Israel. Stop Assaults on Israel's Right to Exist

Our congregation cares deeply about the survival of Israel. We are firmly committed to the security and welfare of Israel. Now more than ever, Israel needs our vocal support. 


A Wider Bridge

Our Shabbat Chanukah gala kiddush & program was sponsored by A Wider Bridge.

Our May 1st 2015 Shabbat in the Spring dinner, our June 24th 2015 Pride Shabbat and our August 9 2015 Shabbat in the Summer was nourished by OneTable.

Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation

Our Rosh Hashanah Kiddush, Seder & Tasting and our Bring Light to Chanukah program and party were made possible by #MakeItHappen micro grants from the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation



  1. I am looking for a new place to worship. I am presently at CBST and an looking for a new Shule. I would be interested in attending your High Holiday services. Can you please provide me with more information. Thank you.
    Bruce Pachter

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