Deepening our connections with Williams

Dear Congregation Beth Israel members and friends,

I’m writing to share with you some happy news: this spring, in addition to serving CBI as your rabbi, I will also be serving the Williams College community as interim Jewish chaplain to the College.

The position at the College (which officially begins in February) is halftime, as is my position at CBI. I know that there will be challenges in dovetailing these two positions, but I am confident that it can be done — and I hope that CBI will reap benefits from this opportunity to more closely connect our shul with the Jewish community and the multi-faith community at the College.

The students have already expressed to me an interest in figuring out how to be more connected with CBI. I’m hoping we can sponsor at least one celebration or program together during the spring semester, so stay tuned for more on that.

I will still be at CBI two days a week. I will still lead davenen (prayer) at CBI two Shabbatot a month. I will still teach my five b’nei mitzvah students. I will still teach the Introduction to Judaism class at CBI. I will still lead our meditation minyan on Friday mornings. I will still provide pastoral care and counseling. And I will still preside over lifecycle events at CBI from babynamings to funerals and everything in between.

I anticipate that there will be times when I have to say “no” to an obligation at the College because I am already committed to something at CBI, and times when I will have to say “no” to something at CBI because I am needed at the College. I know that won’t be easy for anyone (least of all for me!) and I ask all of you to please bear with me as I figure out how to walk this path.

I recognize that this news may evoke anxiety for some of you. You may be wondering whether I will still be able to provide sufficient service and care to the CBI community. I am happy to sit down with anyone who wants to talk about this and what it brings up for you. I promise you that I will do everything within my power to continue to serve CBI with whole heart, even as I also move into serving in this other way to which I am called.

With loving blessings,

Rabbi Rachel

2 responses to “Deepening our connections with Williams

  1. Dara Kaufman Work

    Rabbi Rachel- Congratulation on this exciting new path! I look forward to working with you in this new, additional capacity. Please know that Federation is here to support your efforts. If there is ever an idea or program you think we could help with just let me know.

    Best, Dara

    Dara Kaufman Executive Director Jewish Federation of the Berkshires

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  2. HI Rachel, Great news! I’d love to meet with you when you get a chance to update you on Speaker Committee discussions related to having WC faculty speak at CBI. One such speaker is already in the works and two have already come. I’m going to be away the next week sitting Shiva in NYC with the family of a very old and close friend who just passed away, but I’ll be back in town beginning on Tuesday, so let me know what’s good for you. Thanks. Suzanne

    On Wed, Nov 30, 2016 at 2:31 PM, CBI: From the Rabbi wrote:

    > velveteenrabbi posted: “Dear Congregation Beth Israel members and friends, > I’m writing to share with you some happy news: this spring, in addition to > serving CBI as your rabbi, I will also be serving the Williams College > community as interim Jewish chaplain to the College. ” >

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