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A Few Words from Rabbi Craig Marantz

Thus, with a spirit of inquiry and keen desire to improve, I want you to know that the Spiritual Engagement and Ritual Team and I are taking a good close look our prayer practice at Emanuel. We want to get a better feel for your spiritual needs--and the pertinence of tefillah and other approaches to spirituality. We can only learn so much by virtue of how many people show up on a given Friday, and how many do not. And, just because many multitudes show up for the High Holy Days does not automatically teach us what works and what can be better. I hope you will help us honestly and openly explore the strengths and limitations of our worship experience. We need your feedback about our general commitment to your spiritual growth and faith development. To these ends, we’re putting the finishing touches on a survey that will help us kick off this investigative effort. If memory serves, over 50% of our congregants responded to the relatively recent URJ Benchmarking survey. I hope we can do at least as well with this assessment.

In the meantime, I am also happy to report that we will be experimenting with an additional 6:30 pm Kabbalat Shabbat service on the fourth Friday of each month, which for this month is February 22nd. Again at 6:30 pm. Our hope is to tinker with timing and theme, liturgy and delivery, and community-building and hospitality in order to craft a very rich and relevant service. Please join us. As always, we value the opportunity to welcome you, but we also want to know what you think. We’ll prepare some easy way to invite feedback.

As we move forward as a congregation, it becomes more and more important to confirm how indispensable you are to our community while also learning as much as we can about how you feel about it.

Make it day of blessing and be a force for good.

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