A thank you for your gracious welcome
Dear Chizuk Amuno Community,
It would be an abject understatement to say that this past weekend was perfect. Throughout last week I was religious about watching the forecast, and I was concerned as rain was a virtual certainty for Friday night. Apparently, we have the power here at Chizuk to stop the rain. Sunny skies prevailed and we were able to bring Shabbat in together outside in our amphitheater. I can’t thank Leslie Pomerantz, and the “BROTHERS” Hallock, (Bob and Charlie) for providing the soul and spirit of our tefillah experience. Many of you have been in touch to let me know just how moving the moment was, and I look forward to creating many more in the future.
Shabbat morning was incredible as well. It was a tremendous moment for me to give my sermon as your rabbi. The love that Elissa and I felt in the room was palpable, and the celebration continued into the early afternoon. We have only been on the ground for twelve days, but we already feel like part of the community. You have welcomed us with repeated open arms, and have made this transition joyous and seamless.
This coming Shabbat, we read what amounts to a laundry list of all the places the Children of Israel visited during their desert journey. Given the fact that nothing that appears in Torah is extraneous, it is fair to ask why this list needs to be included at this point in the narrative. I believe that before you go forward into a new space you have to look back as well. The history of the Chizuk Amuno community is awesome. I am humbled to be called upon to work together with the incredible professional team, and you a sacred community, as we build on all that has transpired in 147 years of history. I am ecstatic as we build together towards an even brighter future.
Rabbi Joshua Z. Gruenberg