Soon we will all be gathering with our friends and families for the official celebration of Thanksgiving. It is a wonderful secular tradition but it does not have to be confined to a single day. Indeed, the original idea of a Thanksgiving in early colonial times was to celebrate good fortune whenever it occurred. Judaism provides a perfect context for such celebrations through the prayer of “Shechechianu”. Our families especially enjoy reciting this beautiful prayer at different times of the year for all kinds of events and gatherings for which we are thankful. Especially for this year, when we can all gather in safer circumstances with our loved ones, let us all remember to recite the “Shechecianu” whenever we are thankful for something.
Looking ahead, our next major holiday will be the celebration of Hannukah. For this year, our Religious School will do a Hannukah program, including candle lighting and dreidel games, on December 11. The following Friday, on December 16, we will have a special Hannukah celebration for both the Family Shabbat service and the regular Shabbat service. We encourage everyone to come and enjoy the festivities on both of those dates.
And again, for those who wish to make a difference in our own community, we highly encourage you to volunteer to help plan one of our key events during the year, including the Purim Carnival and Passover Seder. Planning any one of these events allows you to connect with the community, perform a mitzvah, and make the Temple Beth Hillel experience even better. In addition, please consider joining the Temple Beth Hillel Board of Directors next year. Our Board is always on the lookout for members who have ideas for the future of the temple and the ability to carry out that vision. And as we have discovered, serving on the Board makes us appreciate how much Temple Beth Hillel means to us and our children. You can reach out to us or any Board member if you are interested.
Finally, our next Shabbat service will be held this Friday, November 18, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Our own David Zimring will also host Family Shabbat on that day at 6:15 p.m. so please bring the kids and have fun learning about Shabbat through interactive projects. Torah study will be Saturday at 10:15 a.m., as always, and you can join either in-person or on Zoom. Those who wish to join Tefillah services at the Religious School are welcome on Sunday at 9:30 AM. The Religious School families often only see each other and it would be nice for them to get to know other members of the Temple as well. Thanks everyone! Shavua Tov!
If I am not for myself, who will be for me?
If I am not for others, what am I?
And if not now, when? -Rabbi Hillel
~ Anna B Stein and David Zimring, Co-Presidents, Temple Beth Hillel