What Are Judaism’s Places of Worship Called?

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In the Jewish faith, a place of worship is called a temple, shul or synagogue. The synagogue is similar to a Christian church. It serves as a social center and as a place to pray and study. It is the center of the religious community.

The portion of a synagogue where prayer is performed is called the sanctuary, which is designed to face Jerusalem. The Ark is a cabinet that holds the Torah scrolls, which contain the five books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. In Orthodox Jewish synagogues, the women are separated from the men and are relegated to an upper balcony or the back of the sanctuary.