PHOTOS: First-Ever ‘Cell Phone Lockers’ Come to a Lakewood Shul

PHOTOS: After several ‘Shmuezin’ (Sermons) given by Rav Moshe Chaim Kahan to his Williams Street Shul about the disturbances created by cell phones in Shul, a member of the Shul came up with the perfect solution. Cell phone lockers.

As congregants enter the Shul, they are now welcomed by a large steel locker with three dozen cubbies, under lock and key, so that congregants can enjoy a quieter atmosphere by leaving their disturbances outside the Bais Medrash.

But it gets better. While the phones are packed away in the small cubbies, they’re also capable of getting a recharge, thanks to the built-in chargers in each locker.

“You are now entering a cell-free Shul, please abide by the rules,” a sign on the Shul’s door reads. “This Shul is the first Shul in America offering cell phone lockers.” TLS-RR.

This content, and any other content on TLS, may not be republished or reproduced without prior permission from TLS. Copying or reproducing our content is both against the law and against Halacha. To inquire about using our content, including videos or photos, email us at [email protected].

Stay up to date with our news alerts by following us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

**Click here to join over 20,000 receiving our Whatsapp Status updates!**

**Click here to join the official TLS WhatsApp Community!**

Got a news tip? Email us at [email protected], Text 415-857-2667, or WhatsApp 609-661-8668.


  1. Very sad! nothing to be proud of. only fact here is that some people dont have enough self control to turn off their phones and you are flaunting it!

  2. SILENT MODE… WOULD HAVE THE SAME EFFECT….and cost the shul less than by purchasing lockers.
    All shuls should make it mandatory to put your phone on silent mode before entering the shul.

  3. Wow! A friend of mine recently told me of the following contrasting situation: He was called to jury duty and while there was informed that in no uncertain terms would cell-phones in the courtroom be tolerated. Failure to abide by the rules would result in the confiscation of the phones. Contrast that with the following scene: While waiting for chazoros hashatz to begin, the few who had finished shemona esrei were busy texting etc. Now, putting these two scenarios together, well, you get the idea.

    I daven at this shul and there is nothing like being able to daven without the cellphone at the hip – on OR off.

  4. It’s a very nice concept. It’s a shame that’s what it has to come to. Soon there will be the shul with the first cell phone blocker…I wonder if they will have any attendees…

  5. It’s not about the price of the lockers or silent mode, it’s about an incentive to keep phones out of the bais medrash entirely. Only question is what happens if it doesn’t work…what’s the next step ? Perhaps the ramifications are unknown, maybe start a halacha class explaining just how serious disturbing an entire shul is.

  6. Putting the phone on silent is nothing like not having ur phone on u. When its on silent it may not be as much as a distraction but definitely a distraction. Kol hakavod!!!

  7. Hi

    I am one of the people that was involved in this project. The only way to have a distraction free davening is to leave your cell outside, i really hope this trend picks up with other shules and i am willing to help (not financially) other shules get these lockers.

    Anyone interested in more information can email me @ [email protected]

  8. See, it used to be that people would just get phone calls in middle of davening & the phone would ring etc. Now we have a new problem with phones being on silent not being the solution, since we have our desk top @ our finger tips, we see peole pulling out thir phones in middle of davening checking their email/text/news etc. And that my friend is the new problem were talking here!

  9. This happens everywhere, at all types of worship, and at public gatherings, shows and food establishments. It’s a general lack of manners and respect. Good for the shul, hope it works for them.

  10. fantastic idea i think they look like apartment building mailboxes also will they be sound proof ?otherwise that mix of ring tones could be alot of fun -purim torah -not to worry -GR8 IDEA i like it nu boro park lets go !!!!

  11. this did not cost the shul money; it was privately sponsored by someone who wanted to have the zechus to contribute to the proper atmosphere in the shul. telling people to put their phones on silent isn’t enough…true it does not distract other mispallelim, but those people are can still checking their phones. (btw, these lockers are outside the bais medrash and if the phones ring, it will not disturb the davening). other shuls should definitely look into getting them, too!

  12. True, you can just turn off the phone, but sometimes Chazal made a “syug” a fence to help us stay way from aveiros. This is a beautiful ” syug” that I think Chazal would be proud of!

  13. There is a shul in LA , that has a big sign on the door
    “You are entering this shul btnai that if your cell phone goes off you owe the shul $100 ”
    And you know what nobody’s cell phone goes off , because they really take the money from you.
    Try this in your shul with a big sign I guarantee you that the end of the cell phone problem in your shul !!

    its a massive chillul hashem to walk into a shul to daven and have cells go off in middle of davening
    the least one can do is put it on vibrate anyone besides hatzala has no right to leave any radio or cell on period

  15. Great Idea but a sad Idea… we did without cell phones for years… maybe thats why our minds are so clogged now… maybe have the women put them in the glove compartments before they drive…

  16. The texting/email/internet as soon as one finishes Shemoneh Esrai is a big distraction. Forget even Jury Duty. If you were with The President of WHATEVER, you wouldn’t be adjusting your tie, much less texting on a phone.

    We all need FOCUS. Without that, why do you go to minyan in the first place ?

Comments are closed.