From The President

Dear Congregants and Friends,

I am writing to you in the afterglow of the High Holy Days. I hope that you were able to join us for some or all of our services and that you found them as meaningful and inspirational as I did. It is a joy to be able to worship together in person, and also to be able to gather virtually as a larger community.

The holidays continue, and I hope you will join us for our Harvest Moon Potluck Supper in the Sukkah tonight (Friday, September 29) at 5:30pm, followed by a rousing sing-a-long around our bonfire; please RSVP to join us. Saturday morning at 9:30am, Rabbi Pam Wax will lead us as we celebrate both Shabbat and the festival of Sukkot. Bring a picnic lunch and eat together after services in our beautiful sukkah.

We have a special treat scheduled a week later — celebrate Simchat Torah on Saturday, October 7 at 5pm with a joyful evening of band music and dancing for all ages! Joe Alpar and his band will play a variety of Jewish and Middle Eastern songs. At 5pm, we will start with a Torah making craft so that children can dance with their own Torah. Then join Rabbis Rachel Barenblat, Jarah Greenfield, and Lee Moore in a celebration of the start of the annual Torah reading cycle. This event will be catered by Bondhu, a culinary community center in New Ashford; Bangladeshi-inspired small vegetarian bites will be served at 5:30pm. Please RSVP online if you or your family plans on attending.

On Thursday, October 19 at 7:30pm, we will hold a special congregational meeting to discuss and vote on the continuation through June 30, 2024 of the Use & Occupancy Agreement between CBI and the New Hope United Methodist Church, which has been holding worship services at CBI since July 1. The Use & Occupancy Agreement protects CBI and our sacred objects, and sets out clearly the times, uses, and responsibilities of the Church.

Per CBI Bylaws, every full adult member over age 18 is allowed to vote. Seasonal, associate, and student members cannot vote, although all are welcome to attend. If you cannot attend in person, please send in your proxy vote by Monday, October 16. The U & O Agreement and proxy form have just been mailed to every current member. Please click here to RSVP.

And finally, mark your calendar for our Annual Meeting on Tuesday, November 14 at 7:30pm. This year we will gather in person once again, with a Zoom option.

We have many other programs starting this fall — please be sure to read CBI weekly announcements to learn about the latest events.

I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all who made our high holy days worship so meaningful — our service leaders Rabbi Rachel Barenblat and cantorial soloist Ziva Larson, choir director Adam Green, our singers and musicians, Jane Shiyah, who led the children’s services on-site, and Rabbi Jarah Greenfield, who led family services at a home in southern Vermont. Thanks, too, to all who helped with logistics — our synagogue administrator Oliver Jones, ushers, greeters, parking volunteers, people who beautified our gardens and brought flowers, and everyone else whose efforts combined to make these services possible.

Wishing you and your family a sweet new year.


— Natalie Matus