Break out the honey and let's eat some apples! Rosh Hashanah is almost here! We hope you'll join us either way at the annual Rosh Hashanah post-"morning" services potluck at Strawberry Creek Park. We'll gather whenever we make it out of services on Thursday, September 5. We guess somewhere around 2:00 pm, but that's just a guess. Bring a kosher dairy dish or beverage to share, and we'll meet you there, on the field next to the play structure.
a note from Rabbi Creditor:
The Gates are Opening...let's storm the gates!
September 3, 2013
We say, as Yom Kippur ends, that the "gates of forgiveness" are closing, urging us to reflect as we and the world begin again. We are approaching those gates right now. Those gates open wider with every step, large and small, wetake together, beginning with Rosh haShannah this Wednesday evening. It is by the sheer force of our interconnected hearts that those gates will be forced open.
As I wrote last week in J Weekly, I believe that three days a year we are a holier people because we are a "whole-er" people. We dare not miss our chance. The greeters at our shul's door are at least as important as service leaders - please see yourself, wherever you are, as an ambassador of the warmest Netivot Shalom can be. Most people don't mind if a prayer is mispronounced or a sermon goes a little too long (a rabbi's allowed to dream...), but if the person at the door doesn't communicate a joyful welcome, the whole experience will probably fail to inspire. Yes, we should amplify other Jewish moments to higher prominence, but we know these days resonate loudly in our community. In that light, here are some of the many CNS leaders who support us during these days:
Todah Rabbah to Shari Rifas for organizing our Malachim, our greeters, for Yamim Nora'im, the High Holidays. (And to Helen Schneider, for coordinating greeters every Shabbat year-round!) Todah Rabbah to Claire Sherman for coordinating Daveners, to Glenn Massarano for coordinating Torah/Haftarah Readers, to David Stein for coordinating Drashot, to Robin Braverman for coordinating honors, to Eugene Berg and David Stein for coordinating a small army of members to set up our physical space, to David Gill and the Adult Education Committee for Selichot and YN Learning, Marcia Brooks for coordinating the Break-the-Fast, to Hannah Dresner and Debby Graudenz for facilitating Social Hall services, to CNS President Michael Tarle and the entire CNS Board for all their tireless work, to Lisa Gershony and Rachel Schorr for handling the galaxy of details that go into preparing for the chagim, and to you all for being the community we love so dearly! (If we've left anyone out, please let us know!)
Let's see the coming days as our biggest annual family celebrations. And, just like every family celebration, we won't really get the chance to connect intensely with any one relative because they'll all be here at the same time. A request: Imagine, on these intense days, that no one you see is a stranger. If you can do this, just imagine the home Netivot Shalom will be. Let's share some love. It's family time.
These sacred moments are calls to each of us to consider the actions we plan to take in the coming year to make it a better one than 5773. But, friends, let's not get too caught up in our heads - let's channel the power of Rosh haShannah and Yom Kippur to help our hands fulfill the commitments we make.
Tradition says the gates close at the end of the holidays. Let's not settle for that. Let's storm the gates until they're open forever for everyone everywhere!
I had a beautiful day today. I stood with my sister, a passionate rabbi serving the U.S. Navy as a chaplain, at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. We remembered our grandfather of blessed memory, who fought for America and shared hard-earned wisdom with his children and grandchildren.
I looked to my right and saw the Washington Monument. Looked to my left at the Lincoln Memorial. I read quotes engraved on massive stones. And I felt, to my core, one sad feeling: too much war.
Too. Much. War.
The quotes and certain retellings of history would have me believe that we fought for pure purposes: we fought for religious freedom, we fought to end slavery, we fought for freedom for all humanity, we fought to end tyranny. But it's also true that we fought (and fight) for economic interests. It&…