Congregation Etz Chaim of DuPage County

Ken Markwell's blog

Farewell Thoughts

Fri, 05/26/2017 - 11:43am -- Ken Markwell

It is hard to believe that this will be my final article as President of Congregation Etz Chaim. Boy, two years have certainly flown by quickly! At first I was quite hesitant about what my tenure would hold and if I was up for the challenge and responsibility of leading our congregation. I had a productive two years because I received great support from so many. Rabbis Bob, Cosnowsky and Kamil, members of the Executive committee, the Board, Carol and her staff, and of course  many of you. It takes a village, as the saying goes and that was certainly the case for me.

Pesach Learnings

Fri, 03/31/2017 - 10:12am -- Ken Markwell

Spring has finally sprung!

Hope this newsletter finds you well.

Spring is my favorite season. It means that winter is over and we have many months of outdoor weather ahead of us. Obviously I can’t complain about this past winter as it has been the mildest one I have ever experienced having lived in the Chicago area my whole life.

Repairing the World with Action

Fri, 01/27/2017 - 1:58pm -- Ken Markwell

Greetings fellow Congregants,

I hope everyone is well and are enjoying this really mild January weather. How could we not?

We are already a month into 2017. Where does the time go? As my parents always warned me, time goes faster the older you get. Boy, did they have that right.

Giving Thanks

Tue, 11/29/2016 - 10:11am -- Ken Markwell

Dear Friends,

I hope this newsletter finds you happy, healthy and perhaps feeling a bit “stuffed”! I am sure you, like me, have plenty to be thankful for again this year. Getting together with family and friends is always a good thing and having a Holiday like Thanksgiving where we have time to enjoy each other’s company, tell stories, and make new ones is something we should all be thankful for. Often times it is the only Holiday where families travel long distances to be together which makes it even more special.

Jewish Vs. Secular New Year

Wed, 12/30/2015 - 12:00am -- Ken Markwell

As the secular New Year approaches, I wonder if I should feel guilty about celebrating New Year’s Eve.

How do I celebrate being Jewish with this New Year? We all know Rosh Hashanah is our Jewish New Year where we begin reflecting on the past year and the kind of person we have been. We say “Shanah Tovah” to all we meet wishing everyone a sweet New Year. During the Days of Awe leading up to Yom Kippur, we ask God to forgive our past transgressions and promise to be better so we will be inscribed in the book of life. 

Dear Fellow Congregant,

Mon, 11/02/2015 - 11:45am -- Ken Markwell

I was at synagogue today (Sunday October 25th) and saw Jon Berman sitting at his normal place, the Manna table. Jon, Mike Fields and Barry Freeman are to be commended for being there every Sunday asking members to support this great fundraiser. Manna are gift certificates from a wide variety of retailers from groceries to hotels to home improvement centers.


Wed, 09/30/2015 - 1:24pm -- Ken Markwell

As I was sitting in our sanctuary during our High Holidays, I began reflecting on the last 12 months and all the things that happened in my family, both good and bad.

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