Bulletin Article September 2014
Our building will be celebrating its centennial in 2016 and, like most 98 year-olds, it does have a few aches and pains. Some of the wiring is original, there isn’t much insulation, the HVAC systems are pretty rickety and the plumbing is barely adequate.
Our building does play a central role in our congregation. Its jewel box interior connects us palpably to our past. It is easy to imagine our founders worshiping in the building and when we gather for our services we continue in their footsteps. Other synagogues might be more imposing, others might inspire more awe, but our building gives us the connection with our past.
Rabbi Jonathan Blake writes that the purpose of a synagogue is to “make God’s presence noticeable” and I think our building does just that.
So maintaining our building is an extremely high priority for the congregation. We are very fortunate in that a generous donor has given our United Brothers a challenge. For every dollar we raise in donations, the donor will match it dollar for dollar up to $15,000. The donor threw down an additional challenge: if we get 100% of our members participating, another $2,500 will be donated. All of the matching funds are designated for a capital fund that will help protect and preserve our building for the future.
We need to rise to this challenge. This is a generational opportunity for us to ensure that our building will be here for future generations. It is my dream – and I think it shared by most of us – that in 100 years, our great grandchildren will be able to walk into 205 High Street and celebrate their simchas, their holidays and their shabbats. Let’s help make this happen.