On Aug. 1, Temple Beth Israel (TBI) of Waltham will welcome Rabbi David Wynn Finkelstein as its new spiritual leader. The congregation brings in this dynamic rabbi with a vision for the future, even as it looks back on its long history in the community while celebrating its centennial anniversary.
Finkelstein, a graduate of Hebrew College Rabbinical School in Newton, brings to the role pulpit, Jewish education, chaplaincy and cantorial experience as well as a strong focus on prayer, study, story-telling, pastoral care and inclusiveness, according to the temple. Prior to his decision to enter the rabbinate, he taught English and humanities at the middle school and college levels. He also has earned a Master’s Degree in humanistics from the University of Chicago and a Bachelor’s Degree in English from the University of Wisconsin.
TBI will hold two open houses to meet Finkelstein – visitors can discover the close-knit congregation that has made TBI special for 100 years and enjoy a tour of its three gardens dedicated to food equity in the community. Open house dates are:
-Friday, Sept. 12, 6:30 p.m. Kabbalat Shabbat and 7:30 p.m. dinner
-Shabbat (Sabbath) morning Saturday, Sept. 13, 9 a.m. service followed by kiddush lunch
“After meeting with a number of candidates, the committee unanimously recommended Rabbi Finkelstein to the Ritual Committee and the Board of Directors,” said Mark Frydenberg, chairman of TBI’s Rabbi Search Committee. “He stood out as having the skills and vision to lead our community.”
“I grew up at Temple Beth Israel,” said TBI president Merrill Griff. “We take great pride in our 100 years of history in and contribution to Waltham and the surrounding areas. Yet it is important to look ahead, and I know that with Rabbi Finkelstein we are well positioned to be a vibrant congregation for many years into the future. This is an exciting time for us.”
Finkelstein and his family are equally excited about the transition.
“As I met with congregants in a variety of settings during the search process,” Finkelstein said, “it became clear that Temple Beth Israel is the right fit for me as a rabbi. I feel a connection to its people – their sense of community and welcoming nature.
“It’s also the right Jewish home for me, my wife and our young son.”
In addition to the open house dates, Temple Beth Israel holds Shabbat services every Saturday morning at 9 a.m., on one Friday night each month, and for holidays and festivals. For more information, visit the TBI website at www.TBIWaltham.org, email the office at office@TBIWaltham.org or call 781-894-5146. Temple Beth Israel is located at 25 Harvard St.
Temple Beth Israel is an egalitarian, traditional, friendly, unaffiliated synagogue that has served the Jewish community in the Waltham area for 100 years, according to the organization.
Event Location: Temple Beth Israel
25 Harvard Street, Waltham, Massachusetts, 02453
Until Saturday, September 13, 2014 at 1:00 pm