We had successful events in August and early September, both community-led and Rabbi Leah-led, and we welcomed her back from her Israeli sabbatical.
The Shabbat morning service in Diss was a great joint effort – excellent and uplifting. A good-sized group attended from each community. Cantor Annette B. & Rabbi Leah led the service sublimely and we all participated enthusiastically. After the service, with sumptuous food and lots of chat, getting to know each other, everyone I spoke to was enthusiastic about having a joint service (or two) next year, and at least annually. So watch out for this.
Cleaning up in and around the OMH and Peill Room, in preparation for the High Holy Days and Open Day, was also a success. They will be very presentable for these events. I think a clean up with food and schmooze two or three times a year would be good communally, as we work together to improve the appearance of the OMH, Peill Room and area outside.
Preparations, of course, have been made for the High Holy Days and as always I am pleased to see many members and friends involved in these services, as well as visitors. For Selichot this past Saturday, Emily and Meike led us in reflection and discussion of what this period means to us as Jews, to help us to prepare ourselves for the High Holy Days. We thought and talked about aspects of being a thoughtful Jew, the struggles we’ve had over the past year and considered how to do better in the coming year. It’s never easy to change our ways although we must strive to do so. As Philip has said, it may be more possible if we focus on one small thing and then build on it.
We’re also preparing for 18th October, our Open Day and 25th anniversary. We have had quite a few replies from dignitaries and others who are not part of our community. As we hope there will be quite a few attendees, we ask that members and friends arrive on or shortly before the 11:00 a.m. start. The displays in the OMH will show information about:
- Liberal Judaism and our Community
- Events and Services that have taken place
I’ve also been trying to meet up with community members to chat and get to know them better, as I never seem able to talk to people after Shabbat services. Also with a view to members’ and friends’ volunteering – many hands make light work! Good preparation pays off for our community!