Beth Israel Abraham & Voliner (2004)
In the 1960's, four Orthodox synagogues joined to become Congregation Beth Israel Abraham and Voliner, or BIAV for short. The names of these four synagogues were Tiferes Israel, Beth Medrash Hagadol, Beth Abraham, and the Voliner Anshei Sforad Shul. BIAV's location has changed six times. Presently, the congregation is in Overland Park, Kansas on a beautiful four-acre site.
The congregation consists mainly of Euro-American Jews, with some being of Mediterranean descent. A few families have recently immigrated from the former USSR. The congregants speak English primarily and Hebrew secondarily. Older members of the congregation also speak Yiddish. In addition, there is much diversity with regard to age, but the majority of families are in their 30's and 40's with school-aged children.
BIAV defines its mission as: "...to be a welcoming, caring and spirited Orthodox congregation that enables and inspires our members, our children and all Jews to deepen their commitment to live, learn and love Torah, applying it to everyday living in the modern world."
BIAV offers many classes for adult members to help them better understand their faith. In the past, these informative, informal classes have included "18th & Divine Class," "Tanakh Study," and "Chanukah Up the Wazoo & Other Topics." Younger members have classes and programs of their own, which have included "Latte and Learning," and "Cholent and Chat."
Even though the synagogue places great emphasis on education, there is also room for fun. "Children's Divar Torah" is an amusing way for children to learn Torah. Annual social programs that BIAV sponsors have included City-Wide Israel Rally, Family Farm Fest, Israeli Art Show, JCC Concerts, and the annual AMIT Chinese Auction.
People of all Jewish denominations and those of other faiths are welcome at any time.
Activities and Schedule
For hours of availability and activities, see www.biav.org