August 2020 — Elul 5780
How do we ask you to support our Annual Appeal this year in the middle of a pandemic—when our building remains closed, our timetable for reopening is uncertain, and so many are facing real financial insecurity? We offer you three reasons.
First, a basic premise of our community is that we are a shul for all, regardless of ability to pay. In this season of Covid this principle is especially urgent. Our families have been affected. We are already hearing from some of our members that they wish to “pause” their membership because they cannot afford to pay this year. But a spiritual connection during a pandemic is absolutely essential. So we say yes to all our families, regardless of what they can afford. Our Annual Appeal is about giving us the resources we need to run for this coming year.
Which leads to the second reason for our Annual Appeal. The expenses of running our synagogue have never been as uncertain as now. Consider these new areas of expense:
Assuring health and safety through proper PPE. Personal protective equipment, cleaning supplies and building modifications are needed to ensure our indoor space is healthy and safe.
Teaching our children in new ways. With the uncertainty of what the new school year will bring, we must be prepared for all scenarios. New technology and additional professional development will enable us to bring the beauty of our tradition home to our children.
Our digital lifeline. Livestreaming equipment and personnel, and a website designed for a digital age, are indispensable to our ability to reach our members when the building is closed.
We have less revenue. We have more expenses. Which leads to the third reason we ask for your support. With your help, this can be our finest hour. While the building has been physically closed, our community has been more engaged than ever. More people are praying with us online than used to pray in person. More people are learning with us online than used to learn in person. More people are doing acts of chesed, kindness, calling and checking in on our elderly and shut in members.
The pandemic cannot stop us because we have you. Because of you, although our building is closed, our community is ever stronger. Because of you, the light of hope that we can create and sustain together will never go out.
Thank you in advance for your generous support of our Annual Appeal, and for being our covenantal partner. May God keep you and your loved ones healthy and safe in this new year.
Shanah tovah u’metukah,
Rabbi Wes Gardenswartz
Mady Donoff, President
Amy B. Klein, Chair of Annual Appeal