Beth Messiah is a vibrant spiritual community that has served the greater Washington, DC metro area for nearly forty years.
In 1973, a small group of Jewish believers in Yeshua gathered together to form the community that would become Beth Messiah. A number of those founders went on to be pioneers of the modern Messianic Jewish Movement in America and Israel.
Messianic Jewish pioneer Manny Brotman served as the congregation's first spiritual leader. During his tenure the community grew significantly and purchased its first synagogue building. In 1977, Dr. Daniel Juster succeeded Brotman as the senior congregational leader, and he led the community for over two decades, during which time it outgrew its first building, raised up numerous leaders, and birthed a number of ministries both locally and globally. Beth Messiah was also one of the original congregations that formed the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations (UMJC).
Beth Messiah has been a pioneering community in Messianic Jewish music and education. Musicians Paul Wilbur, René Bloch, and Marc Chopinsky of Israel's Hope met and led worship at Beth Messiah. BMC was also the birthplace of Ets Chaiyim School, one of the first Messianic Jewish day schools. While the school closed in 2009 after nearly three decades, the legacy of Ets Chaiyim continues to bear fruit through the hundreds of students who attended.
From 2000-2011, Beth Messiah was led by Emeritus Rabbi Michael and Patricia Bryan. Through their commitment to the Jewish ethic of dor l'dor ("generation to generation"), the Bryans raised up a new generation of leaders at BMC and empowered them to write the next chapter in the story of Beth Messiah Congregation.
A black and white picture of a bar mitzvah in the early days of Beth Messiah. The bar mitzvah boy is standing on the bimah at the Torah reading table between two synagogue leaders. On the table, the Torah scroll is spread open. A microphone extends from the front of the table towards the boy. Behind the three figures, another leader stands ready to help. In the background, a Torah ark or Aron Kodesh stands against a brick wall.
The Ets Chaiyim School logo. Green on black, a tree icon with the words "Tree of Life" inside of it stands against the backdrop of an open Torah scroll. Underneath it are the words Ets Chaiyim School.
Worshippers look toward a white Torah ark on a stage during high holy day services