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Home From the President President's Message - May 2018
President's Message - May 2018 PDF Print E-mail

In April, Congregation Beth Israel provided an exciting array of programs and services for our Congregation to enjoy.  We offered 2 Israeli movies that were both thought provoking and entertaining. We saw the #1 Israeli movie entitled the Women’s Balcony (preceded with pizza) and later in the month we celebrated Yom Haatzmaut, Jewish Independence Day, with the showing of the popular Israeli film, The Bands Visit which is now a Broadway play. Both of these movies provided us a glimpse into some of the religious and social dynamics of life in Israel today. Both DVD’s are available through our CBI Library.

On Yom HaShoa, we experienced a remarkable evening of remembrance of the Holocaust with prayer, song and storytelling.  Rabbi Emanuel, accompanied by Holocaust survivor Nina Shannon, walked silently through the  sanctuary carrying  our relished Holocaust Torah. The Rabbi then read a portion of the Song of the Sea from the Torah which reminded us of earlier freedoms achieved. Rev. Sean Maloney provided an ecumenical prayer for all those who died and suffered during the Holocaust regardless of religion. Then Batsheva our visiting musician, singer, and storyteller, beautifully and emotionally sang songs in English, Hebrew, Yiddish and Ladino memorializing the evening. She also told stories of people, places, events, and heroes of the time.  There were over 80 people in attendance including many visitors from various churches in the community. We were pleased that at the wine and cheese gathering after the service, our guests and congregants alike expressed how unique, moving and meaningful the experience had been.

I am so excited that recently 14 students accompanied by Greg Marks and Margaret Barnett attended a weekend session at Greene Family camp. Under the leadership of Greg, our youth have experienced their “Jewishness” through not only formal learning but by both having the opportunity to interact with Jewish youth from all over the state and being immersed in Jewish camps, weekend events, and visiting places like the Houston Holocaust Museum. These are the experiences that allow our youth to not only learn about being Jewish, but truly live and feel the Jewish experience which will remain with them forever.

Speaking of youth, I encourage everyone to attend the Confirmation/Shabbat/family dinner evening on May 11 at 6:30 P.M. This service is unique in that the students will be conducting the service and providing their insights into the prayers and what Confirmation means to them. Dinner in honor of the Confirmation Class will be provided by their parents. This is an event you won’t want to miss.

Please set aside the evening of June 28, 2018 to attend the Congregation Beth Israel Annual Meeting. You will receive details of the event later in the month.

     Have a great month.

               Jim Gold, CBI President



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