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Community Resources

Counseling

We help members dealing with spiritual and life issues (grief and loss, life changes, hopelessness, etc.) to create relationships with clergy and other community members, as well as develop resources to improve spiritual and personal well-being. We offer pastoral counseling with our Rabbis, who genuinely care about individuals and listen with an open, nonjudgmental heart.

Interfaith

At Congregation Etz Chaim, we promote an open dialogue with friends and neighbors of different faiths to foster positive relationships. We do so through community outreach events that develop mutual respect and understanding within our diverse faith community. 

We also promote positive relationships within our walls, dubbed “in-reach.” We want our interfaith families to feel welcomed and comfortable so we actively host events for them as well. 

If you’re interested in interfaith activities or have suggestions for us, reach out to the Interfaith committee.

Scholarship

The Robert Scott Samuels Scholarship Fund

The Robert Scott Samuels Scholarship Fund is in honor of Robert Scott Samuels, who was taken from us far too soon. It supports those wishing to attend the Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute Camp or CFTY Leadership Training.

As for Robert, he was an accomplished swimmer and diver at 5 years old. He loved rock and roll music and playing with his older brother Michael, two years older than him. While Robert is no longer with us, this fund can support others in enjoying what Robert cannot.  

The Jeremy Bruder Memorial Scholarship Fund

This scholarship is in honor of Jeremy J. Bruder who was tragically shot and killed by a classmate on June 2, 1996. It provides scholarships for the Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute camp and the Youth Israel Trip for young people who would otherwise not be able to participate.

During Jeremy’s high school career, he excelled academically and as a true humanitarian. He actively participated in his school’s mentoring and peer mediation programs, and played several varsity sports. As an honor student, Jeremy had a voracious appetite for knowledge and always carried at least one novel or mechanical operation manual under his arm. His grades, his attitude, and his high moral outlook allowed him to achieve many of his goals but his biggest goal will never be accomplished: to attend the University of Arizona and attain a Bachelor of Science, as well as a law degree. 

He viewed his future with optimistic eyes and would have flourished in any academic environment because he applied the 3D’s: dedication, desire, and discipline. He was so persistent in training for a triathlon that at 13 years old the race organizers changed the rules so he could compete with adults! Not only did he finish in the top 20% overall of the Wisconsin race, he proudly accepted the trophy for 1st place in his age group. On top of that, he battled exercise-induced asthma and still performed as well as he did.  

Jeremy constantly challenged himself not only by participating in triathlons, but he submitted the Cascade Mountains in Washington State over a period of 21 cold and rainy days when he was only 15. 

While Jeremy is no longer with us in body, he remains with us in spirit and we’re sure he’s beaming with pride that he’s still able to help people with this scholarship fund.

Environmental Task Force

The Environmental Task Force works to advance our shared ideals of Tikkun Olam (repairing the world), Tzedek (justice), and Ba’al Tashchit (the prohibition against wanton destruction) by promoting environmental action and education as an integral aspect of Congregation Etz Chaim. Accordingly, we intend to focus on the following:

Conducting electronic and textile recycling events on a yearly or bi-yearly basis;

Working with the Temple staff, Board of Directors and appropriate committees to minimize our environmental impact and maximize the environmental health of our building and grounds;

Presenting educational programs to better understand environmental issues and how our choices affect them;

Working with staff and teachers on environmental education for students, as well as suggesting potential B’nai Mitzvah and class projects;

Exploring new and additional ways in which we can take positive environmental action.

Tallitot

We are excited to announce a partnership with Advah Designs. Advah Designs offers a wide selection of handmade tallitot (Jewish prayer shawls), including traditional woven tallitot, printed silk tallitot, and handwoven tallitot in vibrant colors. Their tallitot are for people of all ages, sizes, and genders. You can shop their online store by clicking here. When you make a purchase through this link, Congregation Etz Chaim receives a portion of your payment as a donation. This is a great way to make a contribution while also gaining a beautiful religious item.

PJ Library

Click here to learn more about receiving free, high-quality Jewish children’s books and music for your 6-month to 12-year-old child.

URJ Resources for Families with Young Children

View resources here

Thu, February 29 2024 20 Adar I 5784