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Presidents' Blog No. 2: Mar 2017

So, every good idea needs to be modified from time to time. We planned to do a blog monthly, but we didn’t have much to say until now…so please excuse our tardiness.

Let’s start with congratulations to Rabbi Mickey Baum on the approval of his contract by the Congregation on March 2. Rabbi Baum will become our Rabbi in July 2017. He was approved by a vote of 64 yes, 5 no and 2 abstentions. While he was approved by an overwhelming margin, we couldn’t help but notice that only about a quarter of our Congregation participated in the vote, and there were few members in attendance who have children in Hebrew school. So again, we are asking this group of families in particular to get involved, join us, and know what is going on in YOUR temple. Bring back the enthusiasm you had last year when you decided to Make Temple Beth Am Great Again after the Congregation voted not to merge. We still need you!! Very little has changed since that time and although several members have stepped up and gotten involved with committees and events, the rest of the Revitalization Committee seems to have fallen back into a sense of complacency. We need everyone to wake up, you are still very much needed!

Ok, now moving on to further doings here…we are in deep discussions to revise the dues structure, to do whatever we can to make it more affordable, while still being able to pay our bills. We will be presenting these changes for 2018-19 since we know next year will be a transition year for us. We want to make sure that we have enough information to present a cohesive plan for our future. In the meantime, we are putting together an incentive plan which we believe will offer a financial benefit to those Congregants who bring new members and/or new funds to our congregation. Stay tuned for further details!!

We are in talks with a company that can enhance our website and bring to us the capability that offers our members a way to make donations, pay bills and register to volunteer or RSVP to events online. We would love to hear your thoughts on this idea and whether or not you think this would be a positive thing for you and for the temple.

It is also time for us to put together a nominating committee. This committee will be seeking individuals to join our temple Board. If you are interested, or you know another member you feel would be an asset, please let us know.

Finally, we are planning a huge garage sale to serve as a temple fundraiser. Rather than doing your own private sale, if we can collect items from all of our Congregation and sell them to the community at large, there is the potential to raise significant dollars and have a lot of fun in the process. We are forming a committee to organize it and are seeking more help. Please volunteer. We anticipate holding this in the temple parking lot sometime on a Sunday in May.

We were very pleased with the attendance at our Purim services and Purim Carnival. Rabbi Brown, together with volunteers, coordinated a wine tasting event before the Saturday evening Purim service that was very nicely attended. Everyone who attended had great things to say about it…a great new tradition perhaps? The Sunday morning service was also well attended. Many young children in costume and even our teen volunteers were in original and fun costumes. The festivities continued with the Brotherhood sponsored Purim Carnival. Some new games were there this year and it too attracted a nice crowd. We had the opportunity to meet some members who expressed interest in getting involved. Some were hesitant to get involved because they felt they could not offer much time. Please do not hesitate to get involved and volunteer whatever time you have or are willing to give. Your one hour or ten hours works for us. We are all volunteers and we understand that our Congregation is made up of a diverse group of people. We want all of you for whatever you can give. Volunteering is an unselfish act…you just need to do it selfishly so that it works for you!!

That is it for now. Don’t forget to participate in our Build a Brick fundraiser and look for some new plans we have coming up…ideas in the works. If you have a fundraising idea that you are willing to participate in and put into action, please let us know.

As always, please reach out to us at presidents@templebethammerrick.org. We look forward to it.

Shari Weissbach and Paul Ross