Friday, April 20, 2012


We have a guest scholar coming to AKSE in a few weeks to enhance the shabbat experience which recently has a lot of opportunity for enhancing.  As one of the Torah readers I will need to attend, though most of these have been significant disappointments for the yield relative to effort.  With only a few weeks to go, there has been very little publicity.  I assume there will be a Friday night dinner with a talk, Shabbos morning with a luncheon and seudah shlishit with a talk.  I know nothing of the speaker other than somebody who I admire greatly admires him greatly and that he is a rabbi.  There is a financial investment that rarely gets recouped.  There are logistical problems for which people rise to the occasion.  That may be the congregation's  most significant benefit.  But for the most part these weekends are rather passive.  People come together but they do not have to put forth the effort to prepare their dinner or any other element of shabbat other than personal scheduling.  They listen to the speaker, maybe ask some questions, acquire an opinion of how the weekend went, give feedback if asked but are rarely moved significantly ahead from the experience.  An unexpected plus, the Cantor will be away so the congregants need to rise to the occasion to conduct services, something that will happen though not always easily.

Maybe the lack of enthusiasm for this reflects on me and what I aspire to Jewishly more than it does on the congregation and what its leadership aspires to for the advancement of the people.

No comments: