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Temple Beth El

Offering Conservative Jewish worship since 1935

83 Chestnut Street/POBox 383
Oneonta, NY 13820
Phone: (607) 432-5522

President’s Messages

President’s Column — July 2018

  • Posted on June 28, 2018

Our annual congregational meeting was held on June 21, and we covered a lot of ground. In my remarks on the State of the Shul, I shared my prognosis for Temple Beth El from two opposing points of view: pessimism …

President’s Column — June 2018

  • Posted on May 30, 2018

Believe it or not, Temple Beth El is winding down its 83rd year. Given the size of our town, the even smaller size of the Jewish community, and the fact that so many Conservative synagogues in America have merged …

President’s Column — May 2018

  • Posted on April 29, 2018

President’s Speech from the Holocaust Remembrance Service – Yom HaShoah

Temple Beth El is sponsoring a community interfaith program titled A Season of Faith and Understanding that brings people together to learn more about other religions in Oneonta and to …

President’s Column – April 2018

  • Posted on March 26, 2018

Periodically, a member comes to me to question our synagogue’s denominational identity. It’s a good question. Are we really a Conservative synagogue? Or are our practices more aligned with the Reform movement? Some members have expressed a preference for Reconstructionist …

President’s Column — February 2018

  • Posted on January 28, 2018

In a small synagogue run by volunteers, a president learns that something can always go wrong and just about every member will eventually be frustrated. It could be a Shabbat service, the food, a forgotten email, a Shofar not sent, …

President’s Column — January 2018

  • Posted on January 1, 2018

A Personal Message from the President

Since moving to Oneonta in 1984, I have quietly managed my chronic Jewish identity crisis. Being Jewish here is not like being Jewish in the Long Island suburb of my youth where neighbors visited …

President’s Column – December 2017

  • Posted on November 28, 2017

Last month, the Rabbinic Review Committee (RRC) sent out over 70 invitations to Temple Beth El members to complete a survey about our synagogue, and nearly 40 members responded (a very high return rate). The questions addressed many aspects of …

President’s Column — November 2017

  • Posted on October 29, 2017

President’s Yom Kippur Appeal

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, Shabbat Shalom and Shanah Tovah. I’d like to welcome everyone, especially our guests who have joined us for Kol Nidrei. We are glad you are here and hope to …

President’s Column — October 2017

  • Posted on September 26, 2017

The shofar’s final blast brought the very difficult Jewish year 5777 to an end. As American Jews, we endured shocks to our sense of safety and belonging that were unexpected. Divisions within Israel about prayer at the Western Wall are …

President’s Column — September 2017

  • Posted on August 29, 2017

In 2017, who would imagine that white nationalists would lash out as they have in Charlottesville? Further shocking news was that Congregation Beth Israel in Charlottesville had their Shabbat morning service interrupted by armed neo-Nazis bearing swastika flags and chanting …

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