MAYWOOD, N.J., August 11, 2010 – Reconstructionist Temple Beth Israel (RTBI), Bergen County’s only Reconstructionist synagogue, will hold its annual Welcome Back picnic on Sunday, August 29, 2010 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Area residents interested in learning more about the synagogue and its services, or its Hebrew school, are invited to attend the free event, which will be held at 34 West Magnolia Avenue in Maywood. Reservations are requested for planning purposes and can be made by calling (201) 845-7550, ext. 1 and leaving a message.
The picnic will feature vegetarian and dairy dishes and give prospective members the opportunity to meet members of RTBI, talk to Rabbi Jarah Greenfield, tour the historic building, and get more information about Reconstructionist Judaism. Registration packets and information about the Sunday-session Hebrew school, RTBI’s Children’s Learning Center, will be available. In addition to classes for students in grades 1 through 7, there will be a new interactive, inter-generational preschool program this fall for children ages 5 and under and their whole families, to be led by Rabbi Greenfield. The Children’s Learning Center begins on Sunday, September 12; the preschool will meet every other week from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. and grades 1-7 have classes every Sunday from 9:15 a.m.- 12:30 p.m.
“We are looking forward to meeting some new friends this year and invite all area residents who are curious about the Reconstructionist movement in general, or RTBI in particular, to come to the picnic and get to know us,” said board President Caryn Starr-Gates. “Our community is truly unique in terms of the kinds of services we offer, the way we make communal decisions, and especially in the way we embrace diversity.” RTBI is home to Jews from many different backgrounds, identities and cultures.
The synagogue offers free High Holiday seats for first-time-ever attendees and welcomes non-members to its services on a regular basis. High Holiday seats for non-members who have attended in the past are $150 each, which is applied to membership dues if the person wishes to join the synagogue later in the year. Reservation forms are available in the August bulletin which is available as a download from the temple’s website, www.rtbi-online.org. Those without internet access may call Membership Chair Linda Shapiro and request a reservation form by calling (201) 845-7550, ext 2.
Reconstructionist Temple Beth Israel is the only Reconstructionist synagogue in Bergen and Rockland counties. It serves members from over twenty communities and is the intimate spiritual home to approximately 60 households. RTBI offers a contemporary look at tradition through its sabbath and holiday services, engaging adult education courses, religious school and family-friendly events throughout the year. As a Reconstructionist temple, RTBI is an open and inclusive congregation that welcomes Jews from all walks of life, and embraces diversity. RTBI is located at 34 West Magnolia Avenue in Maywood. For more information about the temple or Reconstructionist Judaism, please call 201-845-7550, or go to www.rtbi-online.org. RTBI is affiliated with the Jewish Reconstructionist Federation (www.jrf.org).