The North Shore Congregation Israel Legacy Circle

These are the moments.
A wrinkly, sleepy little wonder of a person rests quietly in her parents arms, as they stand before the synagogue family to give the child a name, tying her to the generations that have come before and those yet to be. She lets out a small squeal as she is blessed. The congregation giggles and her family kvells.

A 13 year old boy is called to the Torah: he takes a deep breath and barrels through the Torah portion. Standing in front of the Ark with his parents, their eyes well with tears.

A couple meets. They share the same values and commitments, along with a deep love for one another. They stand under the chuppah in the large sanctuary, just like her parents did at their wedding. The glass is broken – MAZEL TOV!

A beloved grandfather dies and is mourned by the generations of his family. At the funeral, they laugh and cry as the rabbi shares the stories of their beloved’s life and impact on them and the community. They join together in the Kaddish, linking themselves at once to everyone else who has lost someone they loved.

For so many of us, the most meaningful moments of our lives are inextricably interwoven with our North Shore Congregation Israel family. And for as many memories as we have of our most important life cycles and markers at NSCI, there are countless other “everyday” moments with the synagogue that prove perhaps just as, if not even more, impactful and enduring: the friendships cultivated over an Oneg Shabbat or a youth group retreat, the spiritual connection felt in Shabbat services or in our meditative Shabbat ShalOHM experience, the meaningful discussions shared around an adult education class, the stirring of a desire to make a difference in the world awakened at a “Feed the Homeless” session or Mitzvah Day, the true sense of sisterhood experienced at a WNSCI retreat or Vashti’s Banquet, the contentment felt when we see how “at home” our children and grandchildren feel in our synagogue.

For close to 100 years, North Shore Congregation Israel has served as Chicagoland’s flagship synagogue, providing a sustaining source from which individuals and families, young and old, have continued to nourish their spirits and their lives. NSCI truly is a family: a family that has worked together over the generations to foster an inclusive, connected, innovative, and inspirational spiritual home together. We continue to be known for our nationally renowned religious education program and religious thought leadership, as well as maintaining our rich and deep history and roots all the while innovating our approaches to remain relevant and meaningful in our modern day. 

This moment in time calls upon us to preserve and strengthen what past generations have built here at NSCI. Together we can ensure that our children and grandchildren will have the same firm commitment to Judaism and its ethical values as our ancestors did before us.

Our obligation is to leave tomorrow’s legacy just as, if not even stronger than today’s. For now and for the future, we invite you to be a part of assuring our vitality and vibrancy, our traditions and our innovations, our roots and our blossoms for our future generations. By making a bequest or other planned gift today, you will be doing your part to secure North Shore Congregation Israel’s future.


We invite you to join our new North Shore Congregation Israel Legacy Circle by leaving a gift to NSCI in your will or estate plan.

Please join our North Shore Congregation Israel Legacy Circle by signing a Declaration of Intent to leave a gift to NSCI in your will or estate plan.

North Shore Congregation Israel is one of 15 organizations chosen to participate in the Create A Jewish Legacy program designed to boost endowments. The Chicago program, which joins similar efforts in cities around the country, is funded by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and an anonymous donor, and is managed by the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago.

NSCI is the beneficiary of training and resource material to help secure endowment gifts to ensure our future. If we receive a total of 43 commitments over the next two years, we will receive a $20,000 gift to our endowment. Since everyone has a unique family and financial situation, legacy gifts of any size can be designed to match individual circumstances. Options include a simple bequest in a will or estate plan, a life insurance policy, or a charitable remainder trust. A legacy gift can be any size, and all participants will be recognized equally.

Many of you may have already made arrangements to leave a bequest but have not informed us yet. Please contact Sheryl Cohen Solomon, Director of Development, at [email protected] so that we can count you among the 43 needed to receive the $20,000 gift! 

Click HERE for the Declaration of Intent form.