Who We Are
Mekor Habracha emerged from a 1990's community-led prayer group in the Rittenhouse Square area of Philadelphia. Since its inception, it has attracted a diverse group of individuals, ranging from students, young professionals, families, and empty nesters. From 1999-2001, the group met under the auspices of the Etz Chaim organization, and reverted to being mainly lay-led until 2006, when Etz Chaim recruited Rabbi Eliezer Hirsch from New York to lead the group. Since Rabbi Hirsch's arrival, the congregation has grown and flourished, eventually becoming an independent synagogue in 2008, and is now a critical contributing organization to the advancement of Jewish life in Center City. Join us soon for a unique Shabbat and Jewish experience!
The mission of Mekor Habracha is to serve the spiritual, social, and educational needs of Center City's diverse Jewish community. We aspire to provide an environment where people of all ages and religious backgrounds are welcome to participate in the synagogue's activities and Orthodox services.
Yoella Epstein, Esq.
A litigation associate at Blank Rome LLP, she was born and raised in the Philadelphia area. After graduating from University of Southern California, Gould School of Law, she moved to Center City in 2008 with her husband, Jeremy Kriger. Yoella and Jeremy are the proud parents of three girls: Neli, Neima and Adel.
Director, Executive Office, The college on Problems of Drug Dependence, and Scientific Coordinator for the Center on Substance Abuse Research at Temple Medical School. Ellen has lived in Center City since 1972 and is the synagogue's treasurer.
Dr. David Morley
An emergency Physician, trained at Philadelphia's prestigious Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. He is originally from Michigan, and moved to Center City in 2010.
Bethany Nikitenko, Esq., Ex Officio
A lawyer with the firm McLaughlin & Lauricella. Bethany grew up in Philadelphia, is a Temple University Law School graduate and has lived in Center City since beginning law school in 2003.
Dr. Bruce Taubman
A pediatrician with a practice in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. He has lived in Center City since 1972 and is the synagogue's president.
Rabbi Eliezer Hirsch is Mekor Habracha's founding rabbi. Rabbi Hirsch received rabbinical ordination from Ner Israel Rabbinical College in Baltimore, Maryland and Yeshiva Ohr Reuven in Suffern, NY. He earned a Dual Bachelor's Degree in Talmudic Law and Accounting, and a Master's Degree in Talmudic Law from Ner Israel. He also completed post graduate studies in Advanced Rabbinics and Synagogue Management at Touro College and holds Torah U'mesorah teacher certification.
Rabbi Hirsch grew up in Kew Garden Hills, NY, attending Yeshiva of Central Queens elementary school and Yeshiva of Flatbush high school. An aspiring songwriter, musician and band leader, he ultimately altered his plans to spend nearly two decades studying at a number of diverse Yeshivot, including Yeshivat Hakotel, Ner Israel, Mir Jerusalem, Kollel Meshech Chochma, and Ohr Reuven. While in Yeshiva, he forged close relationships with prominent Rabbinic leaders and received years of training from renowned Halachic authorities.
In addition to leading Congregation Mekor Habracha, Rabbi Hirsch serves as Dean of Jewish philosophy for the Association of Hebraic Studies Institute, a distance learning college based in Monsey, NY. He has worked for a number of leading Jewish organizations, including Aish Hatorah Jerusalem, Yeshivat Hakotel, Great Neck Synagogue, Bruriah High School, The Etz Chaim Center, and Yeshiva Ohr Reuven.
Since he and his wife Miriam arrived in Philadelphia, the congregation has experienced exponential growth, and has significantly contributed to the flourishing Center City Jewish community, which now boasts an array of Jewish services, including a fully functioning eruv, a daily morning minyan in the Rittenhouse neighborhood, and an assortment of kosher establishments.
To schedule a meeting with Rabbi Hirsch, please call the office at (215) 525-4246 or contact him directly at RabbiEHirsch@gmail.com.