Congregation Beth Israel Abraham & Voliner, fondly referred to as “BIAV,” dates back to 1890, when minyan meetings were held in the Hammerslough Building at Fifth & Main Streets. The group that gathered was called Etz Chaim (Tree of Life), and in 1894 it founded the Tefereth Israel Congregation.
In 1959, the congregation moved to 83rd and Holmes as part of a merger with two other congregations, Beth Abraham and Beth Medresh Hagadol, becoming Beth Israel Abraham. In 1960 it merged with Voliner Anshei Sefard to become Congregation Beth Israel Abraham and Voliner.
In the 1980’s, it became evident that the Missouri community was becoming smaller and that young, traditional families wanted to create a Torah community in Kansas, closer to the Hebrew Academy and other Jewish institutions. BIAV opened a branch in an Overland Park office building in 1987, followed by the purchase its current location on 99th and Antioch.
Once in Overland Park, the congregation began to flourish and attract many new families from within the greater Kansas City area and from around the world. The BIAV parking lot is full every Shabbat morning… with baby strollers! With 150 member families, BIAV is proud to be the heart of a growing Orthodox community.
BIAV strives to be a welcoming, caring and spirited Orthodox congregation that enables and inspires our members, our children and all Jews to deepen their commitment to live, learn and love Torah, applying it to everyday living in the modern world.
Qualities & Values
- Conduct minyanim (prayer services) that are halachic, participatory and spiritual.
- Create a family atmosphere that fosters a genuine sense of belonging.
- Provide support for our members’ life-cycle, pastoral and ritual needs.
- Provide ongoing educational opportunities for Jews of all backgrounds.
- Encourage and demonstrate our connection with and commitment to the State of Israel.
- Provide opportunities for our members to engage in acts of Chesed within our congregation and the community at large.
- Engender a shared responsibility for providing the financial and other resources needed to fulfill our mission.
- Ensure the existence of institutions that are necessary to support an Orthodox lifestyle in our community.