President’s Kol Nidre Appeal

Kol Nidre Appeal

Good Yontif and Welcome!

My name is Ilene Schechter and I am proud to be the President of Temple Beth El.

Since we are in the Zoom world now it would be difficult to stand and be recognized. I therefore, want to thank the Rabbi, the current Board, the previous board, prior Presidents, any person who heads a committee or is involved in a committee, and anyone who has the Mitzvah’s at the weekly services as well as our teachers and staffs in the Religious School and JCC and our Temple Secretary!

We at Temple Beth El have worked tirelessly this past year to make your experiences filled with rich expressions of Jewish life.

I want to briefly list our past year of events starting with the hiring of a new Rabbi.

Our Rabbi Search Committee worked many long hours interviewing Cantors and Rabbis from across the country. We are very proud to bring Rabbi Jonathan D. Klein into our Temple Beth El Family.

We have a thriving Religious School and Day Care with staff and teachers that teach our young children a Jewish life. We had one Bat Mitzvah, Adison Gartenlaub, that had Congregants volunteer to get ready for her special memorable day!

We had Rabbi Laura Schwartz Harari lead us last year in our High Holiday services bringing an enthusiastic celebration to our Temple Family.

With our Religious Practices Committee organizing our services we had many Congregants step up to lead and/or participate in the weekly services in person. We have continued with this Mitzvah with Rabbi Klein on Zoom.

We had a Paint Night and put on a Children’s Hanukkah program during the Latke Brunch.

We had our second Annual 8K Krazy Kilometers fundraiser and community service venture with all the volunteers and many Sponsors.

We participated in the Interfaith of Bakersfield at meetings and programs at Cal State and Bakersfield College. Rabbi has participated communal services during our difficulties in the country.

Our Sisterhood has increased their membership and the newly formed Men’s program known as the Mensch Club has re-infigurated our Temple Congregants. Our Maintenance and Mensch group has maintained our building and keeps up the enhancement to our Temple.

Our Young Professionals have had several get togethers and have led Friday night services.

We had only two Simcha Set luncheons that were wonderful and brought some Congregants we haven’t seen for a while together for lunch and laughter!

We had a baking class with Cantor Lisa Lipco Levine teaching her mother, Shirley Lipco’s favorite recipes to the women in our Sisterhood. As I write this, we will have had a second baking class with our Mensch group teaching us how to make Challah using Norma Schwartz’s famous recipe.

Rabbi has encouraged many individuals and families to join our Temple Family. His efforts have been commendable by meeting and welcoming them into our community.

Through Zoom, Rabbi has conducted Friday night services for adults and separate services for the children, Saturday afternoon Pirkei Avot (Torah Study) and Havdalah in the evening and teaching Hebrew to adults on Monday evenings.

In other words, to make Temple Beth El thriving and an important and exciting Synagogue to be a part of, it takes many volunteers and money. We couldn’t survive without our dues and sponsorship.

Many people increase their charitable giving during this time to increase their Mitzvahs. We ask to give with your heart. Every amount makes a difference and your sincere generosity is appreciated.

All of this wonderful programming and community building in our community would not be possible without your continued support and without the added efforts of several angels in the community.  I know Temple Beth El is important to you and you want to continue to see it thrive. Also a new generation of Jews can benefit from our warm and embracing community. L’dor V’dor!  I ask that you make your financial contributions RIGHT NOW toward the future of our heimish community that welcomes all. You can donate easily online on our website. Just look for the Kol Nidre Appeal line on the donation page.

Since High Holiday Services will be on Zoom, a Task Force will be providing Temple Beth El “Kol-bags.” Everything is in it, including prayer books and other precious items to be given to the Congregation by the Board.

This excerpt came from the Reform Judaism News, September 17, 2018: A Brief History of the Kol Nidre Prayer. “As we enter this period of repentance and self-reflection, may the words and melodies of our High Holy Day Services lead to a deeply spiritual understanding of our lives, our relationships, and our deeds.”

Thank you for all that everyone does for Temple Beth El!

“More than the Jewish people have kept Shabbat, Shabbat has kept the Jewish people!”

Temple Beth El where Judaism lives!

Ilene Schechter


Temple Beth El