Marc Kaiser, President
I wish you all a happy secular New Year! I hope you and your family have had a restful and inspiring holiday season, ﬁlled with the joy of Hanukkah, connections with friends and loved ones, and memories that you cherish for years to come.
We begin 2017 at Temple Beth El with a renewed sense of community spirit. We’re delighted that our newly-renovated synagogue provides a welcome home-away-from-home for our members. As we become more familiar with it, we’ll see more opportunities to use our space to further our mission as a sacred religious institution. Al Manuel Hall, for instance, already has housed events that were enhanced by the expansion of ﬂoor space, new aesthetics and more modern lighting and other features. Our Beit Midrash provides ﬂexibility as a secondary worship space, library, large classroom, and meeting room that we can utilize in many diﬀerent ways.
Our Mo’adon, or community lounge, is a space unlike any that we’ve had before. We are already using it for youth group gatherings, informal “hangout” space, and small meetings with staﬀ and congregants. Adults can gather, relax with a cup of coﬀee or tea, catch up on email or the latest issue of The Jewish Journal, or simply schmooze with others. We’re a community of diverse interests, a wide range of ages, and family life-cycle stages. How can our space best suit what you want from it? As President of the Board of Directors, I rely on the insights of our professional staﬀ and our Board members. I listen intently to those of you who aren’t shy about expressing your opinions about opportunities to improve their experiences as a congregant. But I realize this is only a small slice of opinions from a community of more than 250 families.
What are your ideas? What new needs can Temple Beth El fulﬁll? How can we make your experience more welcoming, more inspiring, or more valuable to you or your family?
Several months ago in this article I referenced the quote, “In diversity there is strength”. I know that many of you have ideas that deserve thoughtful consideration and can help transform our synagogue in ways that are dynamic and impactful. I know that we haven’t heard many of those ideas yet. My New Year’s resolution is to listen even more intently to the ideas you have and to adopt the best of them into our temple community.
Please help me with my resolution by thinking through what you feel would be best for TBE. Then step forward and oﬀer your best thoughts to either me directly, a member of our professional staﬀ or our Board of Directors. All 24 of us are listed on the back inside page of every Kol Beit El, including this one. If email is not your thing, call one of us… our phone numbers can be found in the Temple Beth El directory.
We’re all ears and anxious for your insights.