Today is August 19, 2018 -
By Rabbi Steven Abraham
On Kol Nidre, I encouraged you to dream with me about what the synagogue of the future will look like. I believe that in an increasingly connected world the role of the synagogue, if we work hard, will continue to grow in importance and meaning – that we need to remember who we are and what our
mission is in order to guarantee our survival.
That night I laid out my list of why synagogues still hold a very important place at the center of Jewish life:
· A place to disconnect
· A place to reconnect
· A place to learn
· A place to find God
· A place to open your mind
· A place to examine and reflect on your life
· A place to cry
· A place to laugh
· A place to tell stories
· A place to question God
· A place to remember
· A place to play
· A place to forgive
· A place to pray
I was thrilled that many of you added to my list through email, Facebook and one-on-one conversations:
· A place to “repair the world” (Tikkun Olam)
· A place that feels like home
· A place where everyone is equal
· A place to sing
· A place to feel safe
· A place to remember our childhood
These are just a few of the many beautiful comments I received. This list represents what we want our synagogue to be. Now we must get down to the hard work of making our dreams a reality. I would like to hear from you about ways that we can continue to create meaningful experiences for you and your families to engage with Judaism – whether it is an adult education topic, Shabbat morning service options or perhaps a specific tune you miss from the High Holy Day service. Take a moment to remind yourself of what your perfect synagogue looks like, smells like, sounds like. Ask yourself what would need to be going on inside or out to make me want to take part?
The Hazzan and I want to be your partners in building a synagogue that meets your needs in 2015 and beyond, but we need to hear from you.
In Pirkei Avot (The Teachings of Our Elders), Rabbi Tarfon would say: “The day is short, the work is much, but the reward is great.”
My door is always open; I look forward to hearing from you!