Rabbi’s Review – June 2019

It Has Been a Privilege

Rabbi Douglas Kohn


Our year has wound its way from last July to this June, and we have seen TBE through its initial rabbinic transitions, and so much more. It is nearly time for my farewell, and for TBE to undertake its next rabbinic transition. As such…

On behalf of Susan and myself, we are pleased to extend our deepest Thank You for your kindness, friendship and support during this year. But more—we have enjoyed the privilege of becoming part of this special TBE community. Our Confirmation class called it a close- knit community, and it is. This is a place where members truly care and commit to one another, and thus to have been welcomed into this precious congregation has been a treat and a privilege.

We shared much this year. Here are a few highlights:

  • Special civic guests at the High Holy Days, including our County Supervisor and our Congresswoman
  • Instigating communal conversation regarding caring for the homeless, stirring up heated but compelling emotions
  • Unwrapping the Torah in the Sanctuary at Simhat Torah—a first
  • Overwhelming support when we grieved with fellow Jews and neighbors following the shooting in Pittsburgh
  • Lots of fun and playful partnering on the bimah—and off!
  • New activity from our Torah school, including brunches, and a book-fair at Barnes & Noble
  • A week-long Hanukkah celebration at Terranea, with candle-lightings and songs every night
  • Renewed interfaith clergy partnerships
  • Lots of stimulating adult learning sessions, addressing medical ethics, American Jewish texts, and varieties of approaches to Torah and sacred Jewish texts
  • A successful rabbinic search process which allowed transitioning to be orderly and designed
  • Design and near-implementation of a new leadership development program
  • The Capstone Project – to complete the fund-raising to retire the unmet need supporting our Temple renovation
  • A Temple staff and office volunteers who truly enjoyed working together on your behalf

And, I am sure there are many more key achievements, as we look back. But now, as this program year wanes and we are busy preparing for the next, allow me to express a special thank you to our Temple co-presidents, Gale Swartz and Eric Imley, with whom I was privileged to work closely all year, the many Temple leaders, committee chairs and volunteers whose devotion enriched our community, and all of you who make TBE a living, embracing Jewish community.

With Shalom, Rabbi Douglas Kohn