After the 2018 High Holy Days I was thrilled to receive an email from a single Jew by Choice, Miri, who shared this with me:
I really enjoyed singing in the choir this year for the High Holy Days and am still riding on the high of that. And Yom Kippur has become my FAVORITE Jewish Holiday. I love the self searching introspection and deep personal connections that I've come to experience on YK each year. While it's great that this holiday is a big-deal-once-a-year thing, I would like to have the same depth of experience on the other holidays.
To that end - the connection part - I've volunteered to chant Torah at the upcoming Nishma service. This will be the first time that I've chanted since my B'nai Mitzvah so I'm really looking forward to doing it.
My getting involved with my temple is a direct result of your guidance and coaching. Having grown up in Christianity where you are "saved" by someone else, I hadn't fully come to the realization that I and I alone am responsible for my connection with others. I had somehow expected people to do it for me, but that's not how we do it in Judaism. We need to reach out and when we do, we find support. This was the BEST piece of advice anyone ever gave me along my conversion path.
While I applaud this woman's spirit I believe that those of us who are already connected to a synagogue community need to make the effort to bring in the new people who appear in our midst. Don't hesitate to say hello to a new face at the oneg.