Each spring I find myself feeling a bit like an excited kid again. The sunshine, flowers, and fresh green of the leaves and grass give me a sense of joy and gratitude. This year, in addition to the seasonal change bringing me hope, I’m full of warmth and pride for our congregation. I have always been impressed by the commitment of our membership to this community, which is why as a member of the committee researching dues models, I became convinced that implementing an alternative dues model at Temple Israel of New Rochelle would be a success.
Many of you have already attended a meeting to learn about the new dues model. What I’ve learned from these meetings is how important Temple Israel is in the lives of our members. Congregants have shared personal stories of what brought them to Temple Israel and why they have made this their spiritual home. Many people describe the sense of community and connection they feel when participating in worship services, educational programs, or social events. Members are proud to be associated with a congregation that provides safe discussion space on Israel matters and actively supports human rights through work on settling refugees. Most especially, those in our community who are recipients of support during challenging times and times of grief, are tremendously grateful to be part of this special congregation.
Members who have filled out the Kavanah card – the card that shares your intention on how you will participate in the new dues model – have told us that Temple Israel of New Rochelle deeply matters to them. Kavanah is the Hebrew word for intention. It has become apparent to me that it is the intention of this community to continue to support a thriving Reform Jewish congregation in New Rochelle.
If you have not had the opportunity to participate in an informational session yet, please attend an upcoming one at the Temple. It is important that all our members hear the details being proposed and have a chance to engage in conversation about how we see the future of our membership.
Liz Weingast, Temple President
Past President’s Address: Lloyd Robinson
Annual Congregational Meeting, 2015
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