By Daniel Mackintosh
The Omer is an opportunity for each of us to share our gifts and build a stronger community together, by participating in a service before Shavuot.
Our congregation is being built with the radical idea that all of us have talents to share with the congregation, and therefore, we want to find new and creative ways to encourage everyone to participate.
With that in mind, we have launched the We Count campaign during the Omer - the seven-week period from Pesach (celebrating the Exodus from Egypt) to Shavuot/Shavuos (the ‘Festival of Weeks’), when we remember the giving of the Torah in the Sinai desert.
These seven weeks are our opportunity to move from the bondage of Egypt, and the patterns of thought and behaviour that enslave us, towards new opportunities for us to grow and develop.
Most synagogues, across all denominations, have a participation rate - the number of their members who come through their doors for any role once a month, let alone play an active role - of under 20%.
But we want our congregation to be different.
We Count will aim to ensure that over the coming weeks, everyone who wants to will be supported to participate in our Shabbat services on Friday night/Saturday mornings.
Joining in will create new ways for each of us to grow and develop in our Jewish lives. There are so many ways for you to play a role: you could read a blessing in English, share a toast over Kiddush, light candles, lead a reflection or facilitate a breakout study group, read a piece of Torah, support the teaching of a new song, help to lead a whole section of the service, or even just help out with the technology of hosting one online.
You could also choose to participate in a service as a pair/group.
Are you open to this?
If so, please email Tamara with the subject ‘We Count’, and share what you would like to do during a service and when.
Wednesday night 22nd April is 14 days of the Omer. We have until 28th May, which is Shavuot.
Can we inspire 80% of our members/builders to participate?
35 days to go!