This has been a wonderful first year at Kolot Mayim for me. We have learned Torah together, we have rearranged where we meet (Deli side), we have begun new duties (Char Ashford has taken on being our Gabbai) and last week we started what I hope will be a regular Friday night Shabbat dinner together with our “Shabbat is in the Bag” evening. We have welcomed new members and welcomed returning members; during this coming year we will be working towards continuing that increase in our membership.
I am beginning to make plans for the coming year – for Yontif services and celebrations, for classes and learning together. But the engine we call Kolot Mayim doesn’t run on my fuel alone! We need participation. This week in our Torah reading, Pinchas, another census is taken, to establish rights of inheritance of the Land that the Israelites will soon dwell within. Establishing those numbers and their due was important. Today as we think about building Kolot Mayim, our numbers also reflect our intention to bring our voice into the larger Jewish world. URJ has suggested that each congregation build a voice of “audacious hospitality” and I hope that all of us together are living up to that phrase.
Some ideas for new classes were voiced at the AGM, and new ideas for how we can structure services – but in order for these ideas to move forward we need to work together. We are a congregation of many talents. Please be in touch with me and let me know what you would like to contribute, what you would like to learn to do so that together we truly can make Kolot Mayim truly synonymous with welcome and inclusion and a genuine “audacious hospitality.”
Wishing everyone a wonderful summer of visits and picnics, of some time for renewal and reflection as we look ahead to coming together again in September. I am truly honoured to be Rabbi at Kolot Mayim, and look forward immensely to working with each of you over the coming year.