Congregation Achduth Vesholom

Congregation Achduth Vesholom is the oldest Jewish congregation in Indiana and has been building Jewish community in Fort Wayne since 1848. 

A charter member of the Reform Movement in the United States (now known as the Union for Reform Judaism), the Temple is linked to a worldwide community of Jews whose progressive values allow a high degree of personal religious autonomy while at the same time place great emphasis on the importance of taking social responsibility in the world at large.

More than eight generations of Jews have found a home at Achduth Vesholom and built a strong Jewish community. To continue that legacy, the congregation in 2012 re-envisioned its facility and grounds at 5200 Old Mill Road to create the Rifkin Campus at 5200 and the Madge Rothschild Resource Center (scheduled to open in Fall 2016). The new Resource Center will house the Temple’s Rabbi Richard B. Safran Library and Jacob L. Goldman Memorial Museum.

While the Temple has been nestled in the Woodhurst neighborhood since 1961, the building also now houses the Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne and the Fort Wayne Jewish Cemetery Association, which moved into the building in 2014 with the congregation and long-time tenant Brightpoint Head Start (formerly CANI Head Start).

The Temple also is home to the Jewish community’s award-winning Thoughtful Thursdays social action program, which provides food, household, and educational items to the 86 families affiliated with Temple Head Start. It is a joint project of Congregation Achduth Vesholom, Congregation B'nai Jacob, and the Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne.

Under the spiritual leadership of Rabbi Javier E. Cattapan, Achduth Vesholom is a welcoming congregation and offers a full scope of worship, educational, cultural, and social opportunities for all ages. Interfaith families are encouraged to participate fully in the life of the congregation. Deeply involved in the community, the Temple spearheads activities that encourage interfaith understanding and cooperation in the Fort Wayne area. 

Adult learning opportunities include Torah Study, current events programming, and Yiddish classes. Introduction to Judaism classes are offered by Rabbi Cattapan for non-affiliated individuals and interfaith couples wishing to explore Judaism, as well as for those considering becoming Jewish.

Religious School includes children age 3 through 12th grade. In addition to a course of general studies and Hebrew, the Religious School provides creative programs, social action projects, and family education. Our Hebrew program includes a Tuesday evening session for students studying for a Bar or Bat Mitzvah.

The Temple’s youth groups for high school youth students (FOrTY) and middle school students (Junior Youth Group) bring together Jewish young people regardless of congregational affiliation for ongoing learning, leadership development and social activities. The youth groups are associated with NFTY (North American Federation of Temple Youth).

Achduth Vesholom also encourages its young people to attend the URJ’s Goldman Union Camp Institute (GUCI) during the summer in Zionsville, Indiana, and Camp Joe Levine, a Jewish day camp sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne.

Friday evening Sabbath services take place year-round. Shabbat morning services are offered periodically during the year. Services also are held for the High Holy Days and other major holidays. The Temple maintains burial plots at Lindenwood Cemetery. 

Office hours are Tuesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

To find out more, we invite you to visit, contact us at (260) 744-4245, or

Congregation Achduth Vesholom
5200 Old Mill Road,
Fort Wayne, IN 46807
Web site:

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Material submitted by Beth Zweig.
  Upcoming Events



Western Galilee and
Central Region News

June 6-11, 2017 - Israel
Building stronger bridges for our educators


January 2, 2017 - Meeting location (TBD) - Mah Jongg lessons/tournament

February 1, 2017 - B'nai Jacob - Yavin Bamnolkar will come to discuss Ancient Jewish communities in India.



Save the Date


Brad Meltzer

7:30 pm
Rifkin Campus
5200 Old Mill Road



►January 27, 28 Indiana Jewish Historical Society Bicentennial

►Confronting the Shoah classes: Starting in January 2017

►March 6 People of the Book Brad Meltzer



  The Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne (JFFW) cordially invites you to attend its six-session program Confronting the Shoah, taught by scholar Dr. David Lindquist.
   The program will be held at the Rifkin Campus (Temple Achduth Vesholom), 5200 Old Mill Road (one mile south of Foster Park) in Fort Wayne.

Wednesday, Jan 11

Tuesday, January 17

Tuesday, January 24

Tuesday, January 31

Tuesday, February 7

Tuesday, February 14

Each two-hour session will begin at 7:00 P.M. in the chapel.

The program is open to adults and high school juniors and seniors in the Fort Wayne/Northeastern Indiana area. There is no cost for teachers or Federation members. Other participants are asked to pay $5 to cover the cost of materials. Major funding for the program is provided by the Dr. Harry W. Salon Foundation and by gifts to the Federation’s Annual Campaign. 

To register, please contact the Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne at 456-0400 or email




(Major Jewish Holidays
& Religious Observances



Rifkin Campus at 5200
Created from stone and bronze by Sculptor Cary Shafer, the sign on Old Mill Road highlights the 
Rifkin Campus at 5200 Partners: 
  • Congregation Achduth Vesholom
  • Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne
  • Fort Wayne Jewish Cemetery Association
  • Madge Rothschild Resource Center
  • Brightpoint Head Start




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Jewish Federation
of Fort Wayne
5200 Old Mill Road
Fort Wayne, IN 46807
Phone:  260-456-0400
Fax:  260-456-0500

Jewish Federation
of North America


    Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council

Thoughtful Thursdays 

Be Part Of Our Team As We Begin 7th Year

The Jewish community's Thoughtful Thursdays volunteers are beginning a 7th year helping the 72 children who attend Brightpoint Head Start at the Temple. Under the leadership of Jamie Berger, our team will assemble bags on the dates listed below. All are welcome to assist.

Dates for assembling bags: 
  • Wednesday, December 7
  • Wednesday, January 18
  • Wednesday, February 1
  • Wednesday, March 1
  • Wednesday, April 12
  • Wednesday, May 3 (Final Bag)


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