Latest Issue - News & Schmooze
Happy (solar) new year! I hope 2019 brings you lots of joy and many blessings.
There’s a great article on ReformJudaism.org: “What Does It Mean to Be a Jew in America on the Eve of 2019?” Many of us are certainly not practicing Judaism the same way as our parents or grandparents. In fact, many American Jews are identifying as non-religious, yet 83% of those people still report being proud to be Jewish, according to a 2013 Pew Research Center study. So what still makes us Jewish, if we’re not “religious”?
That’s up to each of us to answer for ourselves. Whatever your reason, being Jewish is an active choice. Being engaged with it helps to keep it alive. Perhaps you can make a New Year’s Resolution for your Jewish life. Do you want to get to know more people in our community? Learn more about our history at Torah Study? Find or strengthen your spiritual connection at a service? Commit to celebrating each Jewish holiday, even in just some small way?
There are several opportunities this weekend to have a Jewish kick-off to the new year. Rabbi Mike and I will lead services on Friday, followed by a potluck (no meat, no shellfish). On Saturday we’ll have a Tu B'Shvat seder for kids (date night for parents!), enjoying different kinds of fruit, nuts, and treats, pizza for dinner, and games. The b’nei mitzvah class will be making their own tallitot and learning how to tie tzitzit on Sunday morning, and an Adult Ed Class on Jewish Superstitions and their origins will follow (come armed with all the things your parents and grandparents taught you).
Also, mark your calendar for January 25th; special guest Rabbi Mark Kula, who I know from his time working as a rabbi in Miami, and who recently moved to Montana with his family, will lead services. Rabbi Kula also has a lovely voice, and he and I look forward to singing together during the service. I look forward to seeing many faces as we welcome Rabbi Kula to Montana.
See you soon!
Amber Ikeman, Director of Music and Community Engagement
(406) 556-0528 x202
We continue to make progress on our Minyan Campaign – we now have 8 donors (out of the goal of 10), each of whom has pledged $9k per year to the temple for each of the next three years. We just need 2 more of you! Please contact me or the temple to help us reach our goal. I am so grateful to everyone who has contributed to date.
The Board of the temple has been hard at work understanding security in today’s environment. Among other things, we attended a URJ webinar on the topic, met with the Bozeman Police Department, and had a professional security company conduct a building security assessment at the temple. Overall, our temple is in good shape and we have a positive relationship with law enforcement, but there are some incremental improvements to the building and to protocols / procedures that we will be making. One of those improvements is to establish a Security Committee. This is a great way to volunteer some time at the temple, while serving a critical purpose and gaining some new skills. More information will be forthcoming via mail, but if you have any interest in learning more about it or joining, please contact me directly. Thank you.
Congregation Beth Shalom
Please see calendar for full list.
Congregation Beth Shalom is a place where affiliates of all ages come together to be a learning and spiritual community who joyfully pray together and celebrate Jewish history and tradition. We cultivate in our affiliates a lifelong connection to Judaism through the lens of the Reform and Renewal movements.