Mitzvah Moments - October 2018
Your monthly news & updates
on how you can Tikkun Olam
Dear TBE Tikkun Olam Community,

I hope your High Holy Days have been meaningful. 

As Sandy begins his part-time role at TBE and embarks on his new graduate program at Brandeis’ Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program, we have decided to share the responsibility of the opening message in this e-newsletter. 

If you browsed the High Holy Day handouts and listened to the announcements, one thing is very clear, we have a lot of Tikkun Olam programming on the calendar for October. (Thank you to all of our committee lay leaders for their thoughtful planning.)  
Did you choose your WORD that you want to embrace in the year ahead? 
I had a difficult time picking just one word (no surprise). I considered intention, action, connection, compassion and understanding to name a few. While each of these individual words would have sufficed, I decided to roll them into a personal call to action with “chesed.”
My long-held interpretation of chesed goes beyond “loving kindness.”
Chesed, to me, is a commitment to emotionally engage in our relationships and causes, and to develop a deeper connection or understanding of an issue. Chesed takes action to a new level. It occurs when you perform an act of Tikkun Olam with both your heart and your mind. Chesed infuses the act with intention, connection, compassion and commitment -- and possibly even makes it sacred. 
As you will see below, October has many opportunities for us to strive towards chesed – to deepen and broaden our connections to people and our understanding of the world around us. Whether through direct service or learning and social justice, join us with chesed, or your own word, in mind.
Olam Chesed Yibaneh - May we build (and repair) this world with love.
Strengthen our Community
Facing Ourselves and Others in Complicated Times: A Series of TBE Congregant Conversations
Session 1: Civil Discourse in Complicated Times
Wednesday, October 17, 7:00 pm
Join TBE and Facing History and Ourselves as we contribute to building and strengthening our TBE community with the foundational values of inclusion, love and understanding. We begin with part 1 of a four-part series on October 17, as we explore our own identity and how it impacts our behavior and choices, including the tendency to "other". Learn more and RSVP at the link.
How do you Tikkun Olam at TBE?
Evening, date TBD (see doodle a link)
Lay leaders, volunteers and Tikkun Olam participants, join us to discuss Tikkun Olam at TBE and how we can assess and enrich our programming. Click the link to fill out a 'doodle' so we can determine the best date. Please reply to this email if you have difficulties with the link.
Tzedakah and Drives
In our Tzedakah Box this month 
High Holy Day Hunger Drive
Help address the urgent need for food locally, nationally and internationally. As a result of this annual community-wide fundraiser, we are able to collectively make a substantial contribution to these organizations - together we can make a difference. Learn more about our partner organizations and donate at the link.
What are we collecting this Month
Family Table
Family Table is Greater Boston's only Jewish food pantry. As a community, each month we are responsible for supplying 50 cans of salmon and 50 boxes of whole grain cereal for families in need. Please bring in a can of salmon or a box of cereal the next time you come to TBE! 
Fall Collections (Coming soon!)
Please let us know if you would like to help plan and/or distribute items from our Fall Winter Clothes and Toy Drive, November 18th to December 16th. Contact Julie Kreiss at
Direct Service
CASA at Pine Street Inn ("Brunch Club" in Brookline)
Saturday, October 14 , 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
CASA, our Community of Adult Social Action, helps repair the world by cracking some eggs!
Volunteers will provide ingredients, prepare, serve, and share a delicious Sunday brunch with men and women residents at the Beals Street transitional housing complex, run by Pine Street Inn. Up to 8 volunteers needed. For more info or to RSVP, contact Amy Benjamin at the link.
Family Table Distribution
Sunday, October 21 , 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Support Greater Boston’s only Jewish food pantry by donating your time! We have the opportunity to support family table by helping sort, pack and deliver groceries to families. 

Contact Jen Lawrence at the link for more information.
Family Promise Volunteer Training
Sunday, October 21 , 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Join a team of TBE volunteers to provide shelter, support services and sustenance to families who are homeless and working toward independent living. We volunteer to cook and/or serve meals, including interacting with the families. On October 21, TBE is hosting a training that is required for volunteers. Learn more by contacting Susan Westmoreland at the link.
Family Social Action at Cradles to Crayons
Saturday, October 27 , 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Get ready to roll up our sleeves and show our children that they can help make a difference in supporting children in our larger community at Cradles to Crayons. Cradles to Crayons provides children from birth through age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations, with the essential items they need to thrive – at home, at school and at play.

RSVP to co-chair Maya Florence at the link. (Please note we will be sharing your email address with Cradles to Crayons as part the registration process. )
Community (Service) Trip to New Orleans
Led by Cantor Jodi Sufrin and TBE Members John and Lori Solon
November 4 - 9 ,2018
We will be volunteering with SBP, a New Orleans based nonprofit that rebuilds homes after disasters. This is an opportunity for a group of 10-14 members to work together from Monday through Thursday, performing a meaningful hands-on mitzvah as we rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina.  No previous construction experience is needed. Learn more about this trip at the link.
Volunteer with our TBE Literacy Program
Do you love to read? Would you like to share your love of reading with children in a one-to-one setting? Please consider joining our Literacy team for a rewarding volunteer experience reading with a child (or two) in grades K to 4 for one hour during the week. Our Temple Beth Elohim Literacy Team is beginning its 21st year of volunteering at the Potter Road School, our partner school in Framingham. You choose any day that fits your schedule. No prior teaching experience is required…just a desire to help a child improve their reading skills. Learn more by contacting Wendy Cultice at the link.
New Volunteer Opportunity with Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters
What does it take to change a life? A couple of hours, each month. Be matched, 1:1, with an adult with disabilities who is looking for a friend. Volunteer with Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Boston’s Friend 2 Friend MAGIC Program (Monthly Activity Groups In the Community) and help your Friend become more comfortable in our community. Matches meet one designated afternoon or evening per month at a preplanned group activity with other pairs of friends. Activities might include cooking classes, karaoke nights, festive meals, or a tour of Fenway Park. MAGIC is a great way to spend time with your Friend, but also to connect with others in the program at the same time. Learn more by contacting Tania at the link.
Learning and Social Justice
Join our TBE Immigration Justice Initiative
Join a group of TBE members who are passionate about immigration, and seek to affect change both locally and nationally around this issue. Called by our tradition, which commands us help the stranger, we refuse to stand idly by as we hear and see the plight of the stranger in our midst. We have identified specific areas of action through which we can make a difference: Tzedakah and Drives, Rallies/Protests, Accompaniment, Direct Support, Sanctuary, Advocacy and Learning/Reflection. Click the link to see a live "google doc" on how you can make a difference for our immigrant neighbors.
Metrowest Jewish Community Canvass Day for Transgender Equality Sunday, October 7, 10:00 am - 3:00 pm, Temple Beth Am, 300 Pleasant Street, Framingham, MA
Join Keshet and Freedom for All Massachusetts for door-to-door canvassing in Framingham to support transgender people’s rights in Massachusetts. Learn more and RSVP at the link.
The Dialogue Project: Environmental Cooperation with Israel and Palestine
Tuesday, October 9, 7:30pm, Park Avenue Congregational Church, 50 Paul Revere Road, Arlington MA
Hear how a Palestinian from Jordan and an Israeli Jew worked together on their vision for a more environmentally sustainable Middle East. Learn about cross-border environmental cooperation and peace-building, in partnership with the Arava Institute.
Tzedek Reflection, Strength in Acting Together: Embracing and Empowering our Partners in Immigrant Justice
Sunday, October 14, 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm, Temple Hillel B’nai Torah, 120 Corey St, West Roxbury, MA
The Massachusetts Jewish community has been taking strong and varied action around the immigration and refugee crisis in this last year. Join others who are deep in this work and continue the conversation from the January Tzedek Reflection. RSVP at the link.
A Community Conversation on Transgender Equality
Sunday, October 14, 7:00 pm
Join the TBE Congregants for Transgender Equity, TBE's newest Tikkun Olam Initiative, in a thought provoking community conversation about the challenges of living in Massachusetts as a transgender person viewed from several different perspectives. What are the rights currently in place? What would be the threat to these rights if the current law is not upheld by a Yes vote for Question 3 on the November 6th ballot? Learn more and RSVP at the link.
Green Team Meeting
Thursday, October 18, 7:30 pm
Our Green team is exploring ways to make our community more sustainable. Join us as we seek to repair the world!
Racial Justice Initiative: Meeting with Special Guest Speaker
Rahsaan Hall, Director of the Racial Justice Program, MA ACLU
Monday, October 15, 7:00 pm
The Racial Justice Initiative (RJI) provides opportunities to further develop our understanding of how racism impacts our economic, social and justice systems to address these racial inequities. Counselor Rahsaan Hall will discuss the crucial role of the District Attorney in creating a path towards creating criminal justice reform. This will be our Hot Topic for the October meeting. Learn more by contacting Ediss at the link.
Racial Justice Initiative Film and Discussion: "Birth of a Movement"
Sunday, October 21, 6:45 pm
In 1915, Boston-based African American newspaper editor and activist William M. Trotter waged a battle against D.W. Griffith’s technically groundbreaking but notoriously Ku Klux Klan-friendly The Birth of a Nation, unleashing a fight that still rages today about race relations, media representation, and the power and influence of Hollywood. Birth of a Movement captures the backdrop to this prescient clash between human rights, freedom of speech, and a changing media landscape. Join us to view this compelling documentary and discussion with the film’s director and other scholars. RSVP to Ediss at the link.
GBIO Action: Approaching the November Election
Monday, October 22 , 6:30pm, Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, 100 Malcolm X Boulevard, Roxbury
Build power and relationships with other faith based communities to fight the injustices in our world. Demonstrate your own power and passion to our candidates for office, such as Maura Healey, Charlie Baker and Jay Gonzalez. Affect change on criminal justice, affordable housing, health care, and immigration. Contact Sandy if interested!
Special Shabbat Guest Speaker: Ambassador Maura Connelly, former US Ambassador to Lebanon
Friday, November 2, 7:30pm (please note special service time, followed by a festive Oneg Shabbat)
Ambassador Connelly was, until her recent retirement, a career member of the US Senior Foreign Service. She served as the US Ambassador to the Republic of Lebanon and prior to that, has postings throughout the Middle East including Jerusalem, Damascus, and Amman. Ambassador Connelly will share her insights on the turmoil in the Middle East as well as prospects for peace.
Guest Speaker Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat
Tuesday, November 6, 7:00pm
Ambassador Eizenstat joins us on Election Day. During a decade and a half of public service in three US administrations, Ambassador Eizenstat has held a number of key senior positions, including chief White House domestic policy adviser to President Jimmy Carter (1977-1981); U.S. Ambassador to the European Union, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, Under Secretary of State for Economic, Business and Agricultural Affairs, and Deputy Secretary of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration (1993-2001).
"Hot Topics" with Rabbi Joel Sisenwine
November 4 - Feb 3, Once a month, 11:00 - 12:00 pm
How does Jewish wisdom inform us on grappling with contemporary issues? Abortion? Immigration? Capital Punishment? Join Rabbi Joel Sisenwine in exploring Judaism's ancient wisdom in addressing contemporary concerns. All are welcome.
In Case You Missed It...
Green Team making a difference: Variable Speed Fans
Have you noticed anything different about the sanctuary? Our Green team helped install variable speed fans, which are more efficient. Read more on Page 7
"The Next Step in My Journey"
Sandy Aronson, TBE's Tikkun Olam Youth and Community Organizer, discusses his next step in Jewish Professional Life. Don't worry - he's not leaving yet!  Page 9
"Welcoming all Perspectives"
Julie Kreiss, TBE's VP of Tikkun Olam, invites to repair the world through conversation and respectful discourse.  Page 9
Help Needed
Help us and our partners repair the world!
Be a Big Brother or Big Sister
Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters, one of the nation’s oldest mentoring organizations, transforms lives through friendship. Be a mentor to children and adults with disabilities. Approximately 40 Little Brothers and Sisters, and a roughly equal number of adults with disabilities, are waiting on a right-fit match.  
Volunteers Needed for TBE Literacy Program
Share your love for reading with children in a one-to-one setting. Join our literacy team at the Potter Road School in Framingham for a rewarding volunteer experience reading with a child (or two) for one hour during the week. No prior experience required.
Support TBE Members Doing Good Works
MAVEN Project
TBE Physicians - Retired, Semi-Retired, In Industry and In Practice: 
Use your clinical expertise and make a difference - join us for an easy, fun, flexible and rewarding opportunity! The MAVEN Project seeks primary and speciality care physicians to provide advice, mentorship, and education via telehealth technology to clinic providers working in underserved communities. Join TBE Member Lisa Bard Levine in this exciting and meaningful opportunity! Click the link to learn more or volunteer.
Tikkun Olam Calendar!
Along with our new newsletter, we are launching a calendar of all of our Tikkun Olam Opportunities, right on the website. In one central place, see how you can repair the world with TBE! 
What are Mitzvah Moments?
This Mitzvah Moments monthly e-newsletter provides a monthly snapshot of upcoming Tikkun Olam events, with links to more information. The goal of the newsletter is to improve communication, lift awareness of Tikkun Olam events and provide opportunities for the TBE community to come together throughout the year to combine community, compassion and connection.

The ultimate goal of Tikkun Olam at TBE is to provide integrated “Mitzvah Moments” throughout the year which enable the whole temple community to participate in direct service opportunities, education about social justice, and/or collection drives—thereby linking our Jewish values to the act of doing/serving, compassionate giving, and affecting change—in ourselves and in the world around us. 
Tikkun Olam Youth and Community Organizer
Vice President of Tikkun Olam