Rabbis’ summers are a bit of a contradiction. The ritual year has wound down after Passover and Shavuot,
and the end of religious school. Yet the very busiest season is right around the corner, with High Holy Day
preparations, school curriculum, and staffing actively underway. As a congregation, too, we have
simultaneous endings and beginnings afoot.
With the end of 2013-2014, we celebrated another year of financial stability and improvement. We said goodbye to board members Susan Dean and Leslie Paddock. We also honoured Len Silverstein for his myriad accomplishments on the board and executive, most especially the ways he helped us upgrade and improve our Temple home. At the same time, we welcomed Bonnie Teevan as our new president along with three new members of our executive and three more at-large board members. New voices and new perspectives take up the mantle of leadership to build upon the foundation laid by the efforts of the amazing volunteers who have come before them.
At home, the summer months can provide a similarly contrary experience. With long days of sunshine, the possibilities seem endless – garden projects, vacations, and reading a few books that have languished on our side tables or eReaders. At the same time, the “down time” is never as long as we hope, and the ever-present work of the future beckons. If we had hoped to find rest and respite, we sometimes have to let go of the grander plans to find our chance to recharge our bodies and renew our spirits.
Whether summer brings us a flurry of activity, or a chance to find stillness, the important thing is to take note of our blessings along the way. As a temple community, we have a wonderful group of children and teens growing and blossoming under our watchful gaze. We have friends and family finding health and healing despite the challenges of illness. There are moments of sadness and loss as well, but even thosebring hope as we band together to support each other in our times of need.
On a personal note, I want to share my own message of gratitude. Three years ago, I brought my youngest child home from the hospital after a harrowing and nearly deadly illness. The months and years that have followed have brought many milestones, while many challenges are still a work in progress. But there are blessings along the way. This month, all three – all three! – of my children headed off to sleep-away camp, happy and excited for the adventures ahead. Summer is off to a wonderful start!
May you know peace and blessing these summer months, and see you in the Fall!