The future is bright for Congregation Beth Am
July 20, 2018
The membership of Congregation Beth Am, the first conservative synagogue in Seminole County, has overwhelmingly endorsed an agenda that will propel the congregation into the New Year. Valuing Jewish heritage and tradition, the leadership and members of Beth Am are committed to embracing new ideas and new technologies to meet the needs of the evolving Jewish community in Central Florida.
Beth Am continues to provide Friday night and Shabbat morning services that are family friendly and meet the needs of people’s very active lives. To increase the joy of Shabbat and encourage more family time, service times have been shortened without sacrificing any of the spirit of Shabbat. Along with a monthly adult-oriented “Happy Hour” Kabbalat Shabbat service and the addition Kabbalat Shabbat services at members’ homes, Beth Am will innovate to make Shabbat service attendance even more enjoyable and fulfilling. In addition, a new rabbi will soon guide the lay leadership as the search for a new spiritual leader who supports innovation and creativity in the synagogue moves into high gear.
The Religious School at Beth Am will also see significant changes that will enhance the quality education that the congregation’s students have received for more than 40 years. Beth Am has been successfully meeting the needs of our special education students through a self-contained class, leading to bar/bat mitzvah, taught by a certified special education teacher. The upcoming school year will also include a specialized curriculum for those students requiring an accelerated curriculum leading to b’nai mitzvah. New to the school will be the addition of virtual classes for parents who have difficulty getting their children to school during the week. Education Director Nina Fine is also expanding the Sunday Hebrew School schedules with emphasis on making Sunday School a joyous experience for all children.
Beth Am’s social programming continues to draw the interest of its membership and friends in the community with the intent of expanding community-wide programming. In addition to the outreach provided by our Mitzvah Brigade, a free mahjong class is inviting multi-faith participation. As an offshoot of this class, a mahjong group meets weekly with residents at Brookdale Island Lake to ensure that they always have a foursome. The “Pages and Pastries” Book Club offers an opportunity to share in a lively discussion, enjoy dinner or a nosh and be a part of additional outings. Young Jewish adults are the focus for Havdalah parties planned for the fall.
With the approach of the High Holidays, the goal of Beth Am is to bring the congregational family and the Jewish community together to provide spiritually uplifting opportunities in the New Year. With respect for tradition and a focus on the future, Beth Am will continue to be a destination for Jewish prayer, learning and spiritual fulfillment for many years to come. Additional information on Congregation Beth Am can be found a http://www.CongBethAm.org and on Facebook at Congregation Beth Am Longwood Florida.