Looking to the Year Ahead

August 2018 Newsletter Article

I hope your summer has been filled with relaxation, sun, great reads, delicious tomatoes, walks on the beach, family time…; just like one extended Shabbat!  Although we have experienced a lot of change in the realm of staff this year, most pieces are falling into place for next year.  Dale Norman has started in her role as Director of Education and Lifelong Engagement; meeting with teachers, planning curriculum and learning about our community. Dale’s enthusiasm is infectious and she is starting to feel at home. In the months ahead, we hope to have some open houses for her to meet our members and get to know our community.

In the realm of music, we also have some exciting news.  As you know, Meryl Gold will be returning this coming year for High Holidays. Johann Soults (cellist), Scott Nicholas (pianist) will be with us yet again for Kol Nidre and some of the members of our community will lend their musical talent during the High Holidays as well.  Since we last heard Meryl sing, she has been studying guitar and will be able to accompany herself for some of the music.

As for our Shabbat evening and B’nai Mitzvah services, we are lucky that an array of talented soloists and cantors will be helping to lead us in prayer and music.  As you know, Sue Horowitz will be with us once again.  Sue’s exciting news is that her husband Robert has recently been offered a position as medical director of a cancer center.  Robert has worked hard to achieve this position and I am very excited for him and Sue.  So, the news for us is that Sue will now be living in two places – Iowa and Maine! Although she will be moving to Iowa with Robert, they are keeping their home in York, Maine and she will be traveling East about two times a month.  She will be able to stay connected to the York community she loves, the ocean and the communities that she plays music and leads services. Sue will continue to help me lead many of our services and Sisterhood retreat as well as being able to play at her other concerts.

Our spiritual life will continue to be enriched by other music as well. Some of you may have heard Ari Strasser sing at Yael’s good-bye service or have met her when she taught music in our Sunday school.  Ari is an amazingly talented singer-songwriter and she will be helping to lead services some Friday nights as well as at a few B’nai Mitzvah services. Someone new to our community is Cantor Sharon Brown Goldstein, and she works part-time at the Reform synagogue in Westborough, MA.  Cantor Brown will be leading music at a few of our B’nai Mitzvah services this coming year.  In addition, Jodi Blankstein and Adam Dehner will be helping to lead services at two of our B’nai Mitzvah services.

Finally, we are a community blessed with many musically talented people.  Shpiel will be back several times during the year at our Shabbat Services and we hope to have a few other talented folks join us for music as well.  If you are interested in bringing your musical skills to our community, please do not hesitate to reach out to me at rabbi@congregationshalom.org.

Warm regards,
Rabbi Shoshana M. Perry