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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 — 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 …

President’s Column — August 2017

  • Posted on August 8, 2017

It is time to begin thinking about a new year at Temple Beth El. At this time, we are planning the Holy Days and finalizing our calendar for the year.

In the past, we have always held our annual community …

President’s Column — June 2017

  • Posted on May 31, 2017

On April 30, Rabbi Karp, Alice Lichtenstein, Jim Bervcovitz, Howard Kaminsky, and I attended a conference for Conservative Jewish synagogues at Temple Shaara Tfille in Saratoga Springs, NY.  The conference, titled Small &Thriving Congregations, was dedicated to helping leaders of …

President’s Column — May 2017

  • Posted on April 29, 2017

On April 22, over 100 people from the Oneonta community gathered for an interfaith event dedicated to American principles of democracy and religious freedom. The theme of the event was the repudiation of anti-Semitism and Islamophobia, but more importantly honoring

President’s Column – April 2017

  • Posted on April 2, 2017

One important but lesser known aspect of a synagogue president’s role is maintaining relationships with other houses of worship. Thanks to Hollie Jaffe, our synagogue’s long-time representative on the Oneonta interfaith committee, we have been well represented in the community. …

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