This Shabbat, on the first anniversary of my installation as President of Beth Emet, I’d like to share some reflections about what leadership means to me. Over the course of this past year, I have grown to appreciate how important it has been for me to participate, in person, in all that Beth Emet offers. I really enjoyed attending the 6th grade Shabbaton at the Great Wolf Lodge. It was great to get to know some of the parents during lunch, participate (although I actually invited myself) in the famous Beth Emet prayer wear fashion show with members of the Klei Kodesh, and read the 6th grade students’ post-it notes as they shared their thoughts about becoming a Kabbalat Mitzvah. Here are some of my favorite student postings: “excited,” “happy,” “my brother survived and so will I,” “it will be a lot of work,” and “I feel excited but overwhelmed.” This was just one of many wonderful opportunities I had throughout the year to engage with our community.
This position also requires me to engage in important conversations and debate important topics including what the future of education looks like and how Beth Emet can "come back” in person after a challenging past few years. What I have really learned is how wonderful it is to be present -- experiencing WHAT and WHO makes Beth Emet so UNIQUE. Being present has provided me the opportunities to see both “all that works very well” and also see potential areas where we together might grow stronger. What I like most about this role, which should come as no surprise, is that Beth Emet’s secret sauce is the people. While getting involved is good for our collective community, what you gain is so much more: new relationships, putting your passions to work, and using your “secret sauce” to make us all collectively better. Find what makes you smile at Beth Emet, and step in. Be open to the joy that follows from getting engaged.
This Monday is our Annual Meeting, starting at 7:00 pm on Zoom. This is not a meeting per se, but rather an opportunity to hear from our leaders on the state of the congregation, both good as well as our challenges, and how we can continue to move forward from strength to strength. I invite you check it out to learn more about Beth Emet and vote for the new Officers and Board for the 2023-24 year. Should you have questions prior to the Annual Meeting, please email Geoff Prass.
Next Friday, March 24, during Kabbalat Shabbat Services, we will be installing our incoming Officers and Board of Trustees as well as thanking those who are outgoing. It’s a special moment in the annual cycle of the congregation, and we will be having an Oneg Shabbat at 6:00 pm, hosted by the Officers and Board of Trustees.
While the role of being President is a big responsibility, I remain grateful to our leadership, our Klei Kodesh, and each and every member of Beth Emet who are my partners in this important work.
Beth Emet President