Keeping Connected with our President
Keeping Connected January 2020
I want to thank everyone who contributed to our kitchen update project over the last month. So far, we have raised about $2500. There will be more opportunities to contribute through the new year as well. I am really excited about the possibility of obtaining new appliances and improving the overall usability of our kitchen. There are so many people who will benefit from this, including our school, Shalomites, Sisterhood, Brotherhood, and those members who rent our building for celebrations of life cycle events.
In addition to the kitchen, we are looking to improve the look of the sanctuary and social hall. We are in the process of obtaining quotes for painting and new carpeting. We will be working closely with the House Committee, Beautification Committee, and Mishkan Advisory Group to ensure our sanctuary is maintained as a sacred space with these changes.
At the beginning of February, we are going to dedicate an afternoon to deep cleaning the kitchen. We are in the process of selecting a date for this. If you are interested in helping, please let me know.
I want our building to be a place we are proud to be a part of and although our community provides me (and I am sure you as well) with the highest level of satisfaction, our building does need some cosmetic improvements. It will not all happen at once but I truly hope we can find a way to start the process.
I want to wish you a Happy New Year and lots of health & happiness in 2020!
Keeping Connected December 2019
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend and hope you were able to spend some quality time with family and friends. By now, you have received the letter for our Annual Campaign. As you saw, we are looking to improve the quality of our kitchen. This is a long overdue project and very much a necessity. Our appliances are old and not energy-efficient. We need a dishwasher and we need to think about the layout of our kitchen and how we can make it more functional. Although this project is going to require funds, the intent of the project is to provide one new way we can improve our ability to bring in additional revenue to our temple. With a properly functional kitchen, members will be more apt to hold life cycle celebrations at our temple and we will may be able to rent out our kitchen to a cottage industry, such as a baker. More
Keeping Connected November 2019
I hope you all had meaningful high holidays and were able to spend some quality time with friends and family. One item that has been on my mind for quite a while has been the survey we conducted last fall. If you remember, we asked you to participate in a 2-part survey and you may have been wondering what ever happened with the data we generated. I do not want you to think that participation in this survey was wasted energy because it was not. A report has been generated which summarizes the different aspects of Congregation Shalom we delved into, including ritual, youth, our Rabbi, financial elements, youth education, adult education, leadership, our extended family personality, congregational values, volunteerism, and communication. Our goal was to check the pulse of each of these, knowing that our next steps would be to take action where needed. More
Keeping Connected September 2019
It’s hard to believe it’s the end of August. As always, the summer went by far too quickly. Last month, I told you about how hard we have been working to step up security at Congregation Shalom. I want you to be aware of some new procedures that will be in place for the High Holidays. These procedures will be a change from what we are used to, but are being implemented to provide a safer environment in our sanctuary while providing a welcoming environment for our guests. In the next few weeks, all of our members will receive “passes” for High Holidays. Please note that these are not “tickets” and have no monetary value. We will be mailing these passes to each family, providing one pass for every member of the household over 13. When you arrive for High Holiday services, you will be asked to show either your pass or your key card at the front door. If you are bringing guests with you to services, you can just let us know and we will send you additional passes; more information will be forthcoming on how to do this. Non-members will be asked to sign in and will then receive a pass. This will allow us to (1) know who is in our building and (2) obtain the necessary contact information so we can follow up with these guests after the High Holidays are over. I hope you will bear with us and be patient as we implement these new procedures. Please know that this type of practice is happening at many Reform and Conservative congregations throughout the country.
We are also going to be providing a Security Update and practicing an evacuation drill on Sunday September 8 at 4:00 PM in the sanctuary. There will be more information coming on this event. We are hoping for as many people as possible to attend so we can have an effective and meaningful evacuation drill. Note: we will provide food and you will be home in time for the 8:20 Patriots game. So, for now, please just save the date.
I hope you enjoy the remainder of summer and I look forward to seeing you all in September.
Keeping Connected August 2019
I hope everyone is still enjoying the wonderful summer months. Although the temple is relatively quiet right now, there are a lot of important activities happening in preparation for this coming year. What I really want you to be aware of is the work of our very active Security Committee, co-chaired by Alan Fidler and Cayla Maguire. Unfortunately, as you know, we live in challenging times, and must pay more attention to the security of our building and the safety of our members. The Security Committee started meeting at the end of May and the amount of work they have accomplished in such a short period of time is quite impressive. They have developed a detailed plan, and have met with state officials, the local police department and town officials, all with the idea in mind that WE need to feel safe and comfortable when we are at Congregation Shalom. There are many potential challenges in developing this program and the committee is working with the board of trustees on all aspects of their plan. More
Keeping Connected July 2019
Happy Summer! At this time, you should have received the pledge packets for the 2019-2020 fiscal year. I ask that you please return these as soon as possible. This coming year, we have some important work to tackle, including but not limited to: the evaluation of new revenue stream options for our temple, membership outreach, taking a hard look at security and making some changes where needed, and diving into the results of the survey we all participated in last fall. I promise we will be sharing the results of this survey with you in the next 2 months.
We have 4 committees in need of help and I would like to use this time to tell you a little bit about these positions.
- Technology: We need someone with experience in various aspects of technology including computers, video cameras, printers, televisions, and more. We do have some systems in place (e.g., computer maintenance consultant) and part of the job will just be overseeing and making sure our systems are functioning.
- Adult Education: We currently have a very active committee that just needs a chair to provide the coordination and management of tasks, a project manager. This committee meets periodically, but not monthly.
- Fine Arts/Beautification: This committee only needs to meet on an as-needed basis. We have not had a full-fledged committee in a while but we do have people interested in the aesthetics and look of our temple. We are looking for someone to coordinate this group of people when the need arises and someone who has an eye for making and keeping our temple beautiful.
- Oneg: Caren Boroshok is need of an assistant to help organize the Onegs for the year.She is ideally looking for someone in the school community. This position requires no meetings and all tasks are done through the use of a computer program.
Ideally, I would love to start off the new year with all committees fully staffed. So, please let me know if you think you see a fit with one of these openings. If you have any concerns or questions, please contact me.
I look forward to serving as the temple president and working and collaborating with each of you. I hope you know you can reach out to me anytime. Enjoy your summer.