Lynda Gutcheon began the Jewish Education Interim program a year ago. She has spent the year at Congregation Kol Haverim after having served The Temple in Nashville, TN, as their Director of Education for 30 years. She now joins Etz Chaim as our Interim Director of Education.
Lynda Gutcheon's blog
For the past two years, it has been my honor and pleasure to serve as your Interim Director of Education. Getting to know the families here at Etz Chaim has been inspiring. The level of commitment, love and devotion to this congregation that you all have is unmatched. I am awed when I watch Mary Hason spread her love over the plants, flowers, trees and grounds of this place. I feel uplifted when I see the limitless hours that Mark and Barbara Turner and the adult education committee spend to bring meaningful learning to this congregation.
As a naturalized citizen of this country, I am often drawn to stories about immigrants. This story, however, caught me at my core. I share it with you now.
We are honored and thrilled you have chosen to provide your child/ren with a Jewish education. We take our part seriously and strive to make every minute count for every student.
It's hard to believe the school year is almost over. It has been an honor and pleasure for me to be here with you this year. I so appreciate the love, concern and care you have shown me. Etz Chaim is an inspiring place to be.
The Torah calls Pesach "Chag Hamatzot." But we call it "Pesach." Why is this so? Rav Chaim Volozhiner explains as follows:
“The word Matzot and the word Mitzvot are spelled exactly the same in Hebrew. Thus "Chag HaMatzot" can be read "Chag HaMitzvot," meaning that by leaving Egypt and receiving the Torah, the Jewish People now have the opportunity to earn great reward by doing the Mitzvot.”
I believe that we can all make a difference. We all have great opportunities each day to help realize our greatest potentials. So many seemingly trivial interactions between two people present us with a choice: Do we pass along a spark of the Divine? Or do we pass up that opportunity, and leave the world a bit colder in the process?
To that end, I share this with all of you. Let us not forget how we can learn from our children!
Last week we commemorated World Holocaust Day. It is not a “Jewish” commemoration but I thought I would share this story in memory of all those that aided our cause.
As the new secular year begins, we have an opportunity to think about how we can make a difference and teach our children the importance of making a difference as well. Here’s a great idea I found and I absolutely love it!
Blessing Bags are bags you put together and keep in the car to be given to homeless people you may see along the way. It’s something special we can do with our children to teach them about caring for others.
At this time of year, when we celebrate and remember those who fought for our freedom as Jews, we are reminded of how our own actions and deeds can make a difference. Here’s a great reminder: