We celebrated Chanukah with songs and sufganiyot ( jelly donuts). Everyone brought their chanukiah for a show and tell, sharing with everyone where theirs came from. Afterwards we all said the bracha together and shared a pot luck while the lights flickered. We even played dreidel, gambling our chocolate gelt. For some of our guests it was their first time, and for the rest of us the first time in a long time!
This month was busy with the High Holy Days. Rosh Hashanah was a lovely celebration with many delicious foods and deserts provided by the ladies of the congregation. As always it was a great chance to see and catch up with the congregational family. Cantor Patti’s sermon was an inspiration to create a peaceful and productive new year. For Tashlich we walked to the pond adjacent to our congregation to cast our sins into the water and ask forgiveness in preparation for Yom Kippur. On Erev Yom Kippur during the Kol Nidre service, Dr. Joel Goodman and his associate Gudrun Raschen performed the beautifully moving tune on the piano and cello respectively. The next evening’s break-the-fast was bountiful pot luck of dishes from our members. Sukkot was held in the Turner’s backyard under our lovely sukkah, the night was beautiful as ate and held services under the stars.
Each time a month has five Fridays, the congregation hosts a different event. Tonight we had a dairy potluck dinner followed by a screening of the critically acclaimed German film Phoenix.
The annual Independence Day pool party was held at the Friedberg’s earlier in the afternoon we swam and cooked out and Randy led services later in the evening.
This year the congregation held its first Lag B’Omer campfire celebration! The wet weather meant we had to hold it in our parking lot, instead of the lake but the location didn’t deter us. Dr. Bergel shared some of his memories and traditions of the holiday from his childhood growing up in Israel. Using our fire pit we made s’mores, and roasted traditional foods of onions and potatoes while telling scary stories.
Second Night Seder was celebrated with delicious home cooked dishes featuring traditional Sephardic and Ashkenazi dishes provided by Shuli and Brittni of the congregation. Cantor Patti led a wonderful service, to a nearly full house. It was a warm evening shared with family and guests.
Several of the congregation members took part in the MS walk in Addison Circle. A group of us walked with the team the Wizards, named in memory of a founding member of Ner Tamid, I.D. Freed. It was a rewarding day showing support for a great cause, as well as our members, and loved ones who are affected by the disease.
We held our annual Beatles inspired Purim Spiel. It was hilarious and was followed by an impromptu costume context, with a prize for the winner. Afterwards we sang songs and ate lots of sufganyot.
After Torah Study and Havdalah were held followed we had another fun lesson of Israeli and International folk dancing. This was a great chance to learn history and social traditions of other cultures.
The congregation celebrated the start of 2016 with a luncheon at Macaroni Grill in Lewisville. The afternoon was spent with great company and good food.
There was a large turnout for our annual Chanukah service. The sanctuary was aglow the lights from many chanukiahs shared by congregation families.
We had a most enjoyable and enlightening Adult Discussion led by Lincoln Endelman, a WWII Veteran, as he shared his youthful experiences as an Army pilot in the European theater. He shared many colorful experiences which he shared in such detail that it is amazing that they happened 70 years ago!
We had a fun evening with three events. It started with a Torah study led by Cantor Patti about Parashat Lech Lecha. This required so much brain power that it made us absolutely ready to start our Kosher potluck—yummy! And the delicious servings and desserts just energized us for the Israeli/international folk dancing led by Laura Hanson. This was the fourth Israeli/international folk dancing event during 2015. Shelley Allison and Laura Hanson who both led these activities are very experienced and animated folk dancers and teachers who could make even the biggest klutzes (or as I put it dance-negative mutants) find their right leg from their left ones.
High Holy Days events wrapped up today with an inspiring Yom Kippur day service conducted by Cantor Patti Turner and a delicious break-the-fast dinner.
The congregation celebrated Passover with a spectacular Second Night Seder. See slideshow HERE. The sanctuary was nearly filled to capacity, the dinner, mostly home-cooked in members' homes, was delicious, and Cantor Patti was inspirational in leading services.
We welcomed to the congregation our second torah! (Slideshow HERE.) The special dedication service also included the unveiling of a plaque thanking Hilda Pritsker, Jan Ashby, and many anonymous donors who made the purchase possible. At the service several in the congregation proudly read verses in the last chapter of Exodus from our new torah.
While the holiday of Purim began on March 5th, we combined our normal Friday night service with the reading of the Megillah. Costumes were hilarious, but we tried to concentrate on the Story of Ester (photos HERE). We all felt liberated!
The congregation celebrated Tu B'Shevat with a special seder, led by Brittni Coe. The was a great end to a busy day at temple, which included an afternoon of Torah study and a Havdallah service.
For the monthly Adult Education session, Shelley Allison led us in a lively session of Israeli folk dancing. Some participants were experts, others were novices, but we all had agreat time and got plenty of exercise! Thanks, Shelley!
Our Guest Rabbi series continued with a visit by Rabbi Jordan Parr, who took the time out of his busy schedule of traveling to lead an inspiring Friday Night Shabbat service.
The congregation celebrated the start of 2015 with a luncheon at Macaroni Grill in Lewisville. Spirits were high and the food was delicious. Great company and a great way to spend New Years Day.