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Find Your Community

We understand the importance of connection, and Temple Beth El is the place that connects us. We nurture many groups within our larger community to create more meaningful, interwoven relationships among those in our Temple family. Through shared interests, goals, and passions, groups forge common bonds as they serve to strengthen our individual pursuits and our congregational growth.

CAFÉ PANIM

If there’s Religious School on a Sunday, there’s Café Panim, run by dedicated volunteers, providing snacks, coffee, and a space for our parents to get to know each other and share advice and experiences. Parents can hook into our Wi-Fi, work on laptops, or go low tech to simply read, knit, or chat.
 

KESHER/ISRAEL COMMITTEE

The mission of this committee is to enhance the commonality of Jewish life between Israel and the Diaspora. We seek to establish and strengthen relationships between members of Temple Beth El and members of Progressive congregations and institutions in Israel.  Learn more about how we create connections with Israel.
Contact: Joanna Berke, jbee199914@aol.com


MADISON’S JEWS’ NEXT DOR

MJND offers a range of social, educational, and networking events for Jewish people in their 20s & 30s in Madison. Recent events include Torah on Tap and Shabbat dinners.  Learn more and find Madison’s Jews’ Next Dor on Facebook.
Contact: Molly Fields, fieldsmb14@gmail.com


MEN’S CLUB

The Temple Beth El Men’s Club is a group of men of all ages who get together to do mitzvah projects, socialize, connect, and learn together. Our activities include a monthly book club, an annual retreat, sukkah building, and ushering at High Holy Day services. Contact Men’s Club to join.
Contact: Marc Herstand, marcherstand@gmail.com


SHABBAT DINNER GET-TOGETHERS

Join fellow members of the TBE community for dinner prior to Shabbat services. Dinners are the third Friday of the month, beginning at 5:30 pm (plenty of time to get to services at 7:30 pm). Locations vary. Participants pay for their own meals.
Contact: Vivian Ehrlich, vlmehrlich@gmail.com


SINGLES CREATING COMMUNITY

Monthly coffees and dinners bring our singles together regularly to share life’s joys and struggles. If you’re single, this group is for you! Coffees are the third Friday of the month at 9:00 am. Dinners are at 6:30 pm on alternating 4th Tuesdays and 4th Wednesdays. Check our calendar for locations.
Contact: Linda Reivitz, lreivitz@wisc.edu


SISTERHOOD (WOMEN OF REFORM JUDAISM)

Our Sisterhood welcomes all women in our congregation to join as members,
and the entire congregation is invited to Sisterhood programs and events. With Sisterhood, you’ll learn, share, and connect while helping one another and our community. 
Contact: Linda Reivitz, lreivitz@wisc.edu


SUPPORT GROUPS

The Rabbi leads two support groups: one for those whose lives have been touched by mental illness and one for those whose lives have been touched by cancer, including relatives and caregivers.
Contact: Rabbi Jonathan Biatch, rabbi@tbemadison.org

SOCIAL ACTION COMMITTEE

The Social Action Committee engages the congregation in the Jewish mandates of social justice and tikkun olam, making our world a better place. The committee offers the congregation opportunities for service to the community, educational programs, and taking action on larger social justice issues.

The purpose of the social action committee is to organize programs and projects that will engage the congregation in the Jewish mandates of social justice and provide opportunities for tikkun olam. The committee offers the congregation community service opportunities and educational programs.

In a polarized political climate, we strive to advocate for our social justice goals and affirm the Jewish values that transcend partisan politics. Temple Beth El is participates in the Brit Olam, “covenant with our world”, an initiative of the Union of Reform Judaism’s Religious Action Center. We have action teams focused on immigration and racial justice.

The Social Action Committee meets monthly on the 1st Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm. We welcome new members to our meetings and activities.

Contacts: Sherie Sondel, sherie.sondel@gmail.com and Marcia Vandercook,
Marcia.vandercook@gmail.com

Learn more about our mitzvah activities.

Mitzvah Opportunities

Porchlight’s Men’s Shelter

Temple Beth El cooks, delivers, and serves a meal to the clients of Porchlight on the 5th Wednesday of every month. Porchlight provides emergency shelter, food, employment services, counseling, and affordable transitional and permanent housing. 

Volunteer Opportunities Available:

  • Shopping for Ingredients
  • Cooking the Meal at Temple on Wednesday 4:00 -5:00 pm
  • Baking Cookies at Home
  • Transporting food to Grace Episcopal Church 6:00-7:00 pm
  • Serving the food at Grace Men’s Shelter between 7:00 -9:00 pm

Contact Pam Robbins at pamrobbins3@gmail.com
For dates, specific needs and to sign up, visit our signup.com page.


High Holy Days Food Drive

Every year at Rosh Hashanah, we ask the congregation to remember those in our community without enough food by making a monetary contribution. The funds support Second Harvest Food Bank and our other hunger-related programs.


Thanksgiving Food Drive

We challenge the religious school children to collect food to add to the Goodman Center Thanksgiving baskets, distributed to hundreds of needy families in Dane County.


Emerson School

With the other Madison Jewish congregations, we participate in the Madison Public Schools adopt-a-school program. We provide volunteers to tutor children in literacy and math, support evening activities for the families, and provide needed items like backpacks and healthy snacks.
Contact Marcia Vandercook at marcia.vandercook@gmail.com.

Thoreau School

We are part of an interfaith project to help families at our neighborhood elementary school, Thoreau. On a periodic basis, we fill backpacks for school families who otherwise would not have enough food for the weekend.
Contact Vic Levy at levy@uwplatt.edu.

Healing House

TBE recently completed 18 years of providing meals and shelter through The Road Home, a program that helps families experiencing homelessness find and maintain stable housing. The Road Home has now formed a partnership with Healing House, a program of Madison-Area Urban Ministry. Healing House provides housing, meals and care for homeless families when a member needs to recover from surgery, illness, or childbirth. We provide cooked meals several weeks a year.
Contact Cathy Rotter at c.rotter.mail@gmail.com.

Catholic Multicultural Center

The Catholic Multicultural Center provides free meals every day to about 70 south side community members and homeless people. The Center buys and prepares the food, while volunteers serve the food and clean up. A variety of church congregations and community groups provide the volunteer corps to support this effort. We help out the second Monday of each month.
Contact Sue Levy at slevy51@gmail.com. For dates and to sign up, visit here.

JSS Refugee Resettlement Program

Jewish Social Services provides case management, job help, and housing for newly-arrived refugee families from a number of countries. Our volunteers work to set up their apartments with furniture and food. We also provide summer and after-school tutors for students from one family.
Contact: Sherie Sondel, sherie.sondel@gmail.com

Learn more about our mitzvah activities.

November 21, 2019 23 Cheshvan 5780