President’s Post – October 2018

A Box of Chocolates

Eric Imley & Gale Swartz, Co-Presidents

This is a very exciting time for all of us at Temple Beth El as we look at the present and dream of the future. How will each of us contribute to reaching these dreams?

To quote the cinematic icon, Forrest Gump’s mother, who said, “Life is like a box of chocolates you never know what you’re going to get.” We can certainly apply this wise advice at TBE, however, this simple phrase needs some additional thought. The box contains the usual assortment of light and dark chocolate, nuts and chews, creamy centers and sticky caramel ones. What does choices do you make to take that first bite?

What are some of the flavors in our community’s box of chocolates? We ask how is our sampling going here in our spiritual home? Do we just stick to the same ‘ol, same ‘ol, or are we willing to nibble on something a bit different? Maybe try one of our alternative worship experiences, or come to Torah School on a Sunday morning, even if we no longer have school-aged children, to see the magic that is created every week. Have you recently come to a b’nei mitzvah service as a congregant (all services are open to the congregation) to see a child of this community become a young adult, tasting the joy and happiness that such moments brings to all who are there, to name a few possibilities. What are some of the things we are doing to ensure that our chocolates are enticing and have something for all of us.

Our Torah school is thriving under the leadership of Racheli Morris. Together Racheli and the Torah School teachers finalized the curriculum. A teachers’ workshop was facilitated by our dear friend, Sandye Linnetz, and was a great success. There is an increase in school enrollment this year and the Board of Education is considering the option of separating combined classes as new enrollment numbers are finalized.

The Board of Directors continues to look for new revenue streams. Rental negotiations with San Pedro Co-Op Preschool are in the final stages. We anticipate a second cell tower, this one for Verizon, on our roof by Pesah, completing a process that has lasted well over 18 months. Additionally, under the tireless leadership of Elliott Brunner, we have a new website reflecting the modern synagogue that we are, and improving our prospective member experience.

A new website is only one of the steps to increase our membership numbers inside of our virtual chocolate box. If you know of anyone searching for a spiritual home, bring them to a Shabbat Service or Sisterhood event. Once they lift the lid and get a taste of all of the many varieties inside, we hope they will be eager for more and bring their own new flavors to add to our box of chocolates.