Renewed Joy & Incredible Energy

Rabbi's Message - March 29, 2022

Rabbi Karen Bodney-Halasz

There is such incredible energy at Temple right now.  Excitement is building as renovations and remodels near completion.  A return to in-person services brings renewed joy back to familiar spaces - musical vibrations are ringing with the sound of thanksgiving and hope.  Impressive turnouts for Share Shabbat and Purim usher in a palpable warmth, in both body and spirit, back to our Great Hall.  And now, our kitchen once again fills our senses with the comforting smells of cinnamon and honey as volunteers bustle around preparing for our Jewish Cultural Festival - our first one since 2019.   

Over the past two years we have worked hard to adapt our traditions to meet the changing needs of the pandemic.  Even though we have created community in virtual spaces and engaged in lively conversations and online programs, nothing compares to being together in person.  Even if we hadn’t been able to make the exciting changes to our physical building, it would have been enough just to spend time with one another again.  Dayeinu.  

Now is the time to reconnect with Temple, your spiritual home.  We can’t wait to gather again and renew our sense of Jewish community.  Lots of opportunities are coming up - Share Shabbat on Friday, the Ryterband Brunch lecture on Sunday, the Open House on April 10, the Thinking about God adult education series beginning on April 7, and many volunteer opportunities to prepare for the Jewish Cultural Festival.  Please, come on by, grab a cup of coffee, find a comfortable seat, and make yourself at home again.  You need to experience for yourself the excitement, joy, music, warmth, and delicious smells that have filled our space.  

The biggest event we have in the near future will, of course, be the Jewish Cultural Festival.  We hope you will save the date of June 12 and help us represent Jewish life to the greater community in the best way we can.  And please consider supporting the festival with a contribution at whatever level of giving you are comfortable with.  We are a vibrant community and want to share all that we love about being Jewish at Temple Israel to our friends and neighbors.  Your financial help enables us to do that and keeps our programs and services available to all.  

Thank you for supporting your congregation in all of the ways that you have, especially during Covid.  No one else can bring the unique gifts that each of you do.   Together, we are Temple Israel and we are stronger than ever, moving from strength to strength.