At Beth Ami this past year was a time of building on solid foundations and adding new staff and leadership. In addition to welcoming several wonderful people to our already competent and devoted board, led again this year by the uniquely gifted and talented Rosemary Watson, our community is blessed to have Jennifer Twitchell take over the direction of our religious school. One of the SCV’s top educators, Jennifer brings together her enthusiasm and passion for Judaism with her experience and pedagogic skills in an amazing combination and already is making a tremendous impact. We thank our Cantor, Kenny Ellis, who continues working with our B’nai Mitzvah, and is excited to have even more time bringing in some exciting new special musical services and his consistent warmth and humor to our Shabbat and holiday celebrations. Our Men’s Club is now being guided by Brian Block, who has taken the reins from Daniel Levine. We owe Daniel the deepest gratitude for his many years of leadership, and we miss him and the whole Levine family. We wish them well in their new home in Texas. As we transition in the sisterhood from the many years of devoted leadership by Francine Van Scoyoc to Judith Stolnitz, we recognize how blessed we have all been by the many wonderful programs and overall support which our community has enjoyed led by the women in our midst.
During the last year we have also added some important new programs, and during this coming year we will be adding several more. The many 12 Step support groups that use our facility have now been joined by the DBSA (Depression Bipolar Support Alliance), which has helped create the only regular meetings of their kind for mental health in our valley. They continue to grow in strength as they help so many in our community. Our own board member Lori Litel has recently established a once a month support group for parents of children with special needs, (please see the flyer inside this month’s newsletter.)
Our teen group, Ignite@TBA is back in session after the summer and a new leadership group is working on an exciting schedule for the New Year. And for our teens we have also added a new Teen Torah group meeting the first Sunday of the month at 1:00 pm beginning in October. This new opportunity was established by the teens themselves, who wanted to continue to learn post-B’nai Mitzvah.
Our adult education continues to thrive with our Tuesday morning Midrash discussion meeting at 9 am, and our weekly Torah portion discussion convening at 7 pm. These groups are a world of mental and spiritual opportunities unto themselves, and a weekly pleasure for all who participate. Don’t worry about joining in at any time. Each person in our community has a voice that is an integral part of the harmony of Torah study.
However, this is only just the beginning. This year each one of us will see continued opportunities for making a meaningful difference, literally the ability to create a new reality. We encourage you to be a part of it. During the coming year we hope you will join with us at Temple Beth Ami in working in common cause on tikkun olam/Repair of our World.
We look forward to getting this new year off to a great start. In 5778 we will be celebrating High Holiday services together at Santa Clarita United Methodist Church, 26640 Bouquet Canyon Rd. Our family looks forward to being with you all soon.
LE-SHANAH TOVAH TIKATEVU -- MAY YOU BE INSCRIBED FOR A GOOD YEAR!