My dear TRT family,
Since I started my role as a president, each time I enter Temple Rodeph Torah I have the honor of meeting the wonderful members who put their heart into volunteering, to make our community a thriving one. And 2020 is no different. Our volunteers continue to dream, create and design what we’ll encounter next. I am delighted to see volunteers step up to ensure that meaningful musical worship will continue to be one of the pillars of our community. Their passion is infectious, and I hope that you will join them.
As 2020 began, we already signed a contract with Rabbi Marc Disick as our interim Rabbi for 2020-2021. And that is a significant accomplishment. He will be starting July 1. Rabbi Disick impressed our Search Committee with his candor, professionalism and compassion. As an Interim Rabbi, he is not only going to fill the duties of a Senior Rabbi, but he is also specifically trained to help our congregation identify the guiding criteria toward the future of the community. He will work with our leadership as well as with all our members.
We recognize how hard it will be to close a chapter, to reminisce, say thank you, and l’hitraot to Rabbi Weber and Rabbi Stern. A group of creative members is in the midst of planning the Gala Celebration in honor of Rabbi Weber and Rabbi Stern’s retirements. This double-chai chapter is worthy of celebrating and distinguishing a meaningful time in our lives together. By now, you should had received the invitation to the Gala Celebration on April 26. The planning for this important event is complex, and your early RSVP is appreciated. We are creating a tribute journal and keepsake containing letters, remembrances and well wishes from dignitaries, colleagues and you, members of TRT. Please make sure your family’s warm wishes will be included. Understand we need time in collating and designing the journal before printing deadlines, so please do not delay.
I wanted to share with you a personal experience I had a week or so ago. I attended the Jewish Solidarity March in NYC over the Brooklyn Bridge. I felt as if I was an integral part of our people: the Jewish people. I met hundreds of people, who were standing up for our own freedom of religion, some Jewish, some not. Even those who were not affiliated with any movement were there to say: We cannot allow fear to occur, and hate has no place here. At times, when I was on the bridge I thought: What would have happened if people had spoken up against hate back in Europe in 1939? I realized that we cannot allow fear to scare us into hiding. The consequences are far too dangerous. We must stand up for ourselves and do so together. Seeing thousands of people stand up that day, I felt inspired.
Tmima Grinvald, Temple President