From Rabbi Johanna Hershenson
Summer solstice has passed and while we enjoy Central Oregon’s sparkling summer weather and activity, the truth is that the days are already getting shorter. I am reminded of the Special’s song that carried me through my cancer year…”Enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think.”
In Temple Beth Tikvah, in addition to taking advantage of summer by celebrating Shabbat in Shevlin Park and other outdoor venues, we are preparing for the High Holy Days and a year of programming designed to build our community ethos and inspire us to live meaningfully.
Social Action events like Backdoor Café, Family Kitchen, Habitat for Humanity builds, and a Havdallah with a Purpose to learn about The Giving Plate (our local food pantry) engage us in Central Oregon. Adult learning events such as Afternoon Philoso-tea (exploring Jewish thought and thinkers), a Jewish Discovery Course for prospective Jews by choice, and Havdallah gatherings will be complemented by a Facebook Torah Study and Discussion effort. Ritual events include formal and informal Shabbat celebrations as well as a Tisha B’Av reflection opportunity.
Most importantly, I hope we take opportunities in our lighter schedules, to meet and greet one another. Summer is a great time to hike and picnic together, to invite folks over for backyard barbecues and the like. Feel free to post an open invitation in our private Facebook page. Or pick up the Temple Beth Tikvah roster and give a call to someone you’ve met but would like to get to know better.
The Talmud teaches: It is not on us to complete every task, but neither are we free to desist from making an effort. Read a Jewish book this summer and share your thoughts with others. Volunteer when you see requests from our social action mavens. Say hello, when you run into a TBT member at Summerfest or concerts at Les Schwab or the Bend Athletic Club. Engage. Reach out.
Enjoy yourself, it’s later than you think…grab summer by the sun’s rays and bask in its warmth. Before we know it, school and Rosh Hashanah will be upon us…