I'm the Rabbi at the Chabad of Peabody
We'd like you to join us for the High Holidays.
These are the things you should know about us first.
I decided to write our High Holiday ad this year because it's been brought to my attention there may be a few misconceptions about Chabad that ought to be addressed.
We are probably not what you expect, and you will probably be pleasantly surprised.
Our services are quick.
My sermons are funny. And if I do my job right, meaningful. You'll be thinking about them after the services. This may lead to a lively conversation. Or even a spirited debate. Imagine that.
Our services are spoken in English and Hebrew.
You won't have any trouble following along.
You don't need to belong to our synagogue to get a good seat.
Sure, we'd love to have your support but partnership is never required to attend any of our programs or services. Ever.
Children are welcome. The more the better. We have a few of our own. Okay, more than a few. You'll have to come to find out how many.
Ninety-five percent of the people you'll meet at Chabad aren't Orthodox. There are Jews of every persuasion-Reform, Conservative, Modern Orthodox, Reconstructionist, even Jewish Renewal.
In fact, if you're a member of another synagogue and join us, you're likely to run into other members while you're here. Don't worry. What happens at Chabad, stays at Chabad.
Yes, We do have a mechitza (divider between the men and women) however, if past reports are any indication, you may not even notice that it is there. You will be too busy enjoying, learning, laughing and growing spiritually.
We're a friendly congregation. If you're new to our services, be prepared, someone will make you feel welcome.
There are people who join us to pray.
There are people who join us to kibitz. And to make new friends.
If you're here simply for some alone time, we're good with that.
Now that you know a little bit about us, you may find yourself asking, "What do you actually believe?"
Good question. We ask it of ourselves often.
We don't have all the answers, but we do have some. So here's a start.
We believe the world is a good place and that light dispels darkness. We believe that Judaism should bring people together, not keep them apart. Our differences are opportunities for learning and growth.
We believe that helping to bring out the best in others leads to bringing out the best in ourselves.
We believe, that loving and supporting Israel passionately is a an essential part of being a Jew in today's world.
We believe in acts of kindness and maintaining a healthy sense of humor.
Laughter is a good thing. So is smiling. You'll see a lot of smiles here at Chabad. So smile freely. We're big on the whole joy thing.
If you won't try it, you won't know what you are missing.
If you'd like to experience something a bit different this year, visit www.jewishpeabody.com or give us a call at 978-977-9111 and we'll save you some seats. Free. And as always, our pleasure.
I look forward to spending the High Holidays with you and your family.
Rabbi Nechemia Schusterman