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If you haven’t been to Temple recently, you’ve missed a lot! Temple is a place where you can remove yourself from the day-to-day hustle and bustle, relax and meet new people and just be Jewish, whatever that means to you. Here are just a few examples of the latest events and weekly programs taking place.

The Jewish Adults Mingle (JAM Group) got together at Up Down in the East Village to socialize and play arcade and pinball games from the ‘80’s and 90’s (remember Pac-Man, Centipede, Frogger and Mario Brothers?). The group got together at Tacopacolypse for a quick bite and great conversation before heading over to Up Down. Look for another JAM Event later this summer.

The Passover Seder is one of the most popular holidays at Temple. The Seder was filled with delicious Passover foods you’d expect like matzo ball soup, gefilte fish, brisket and salmon. Even matzo pizza for the kids! Rabbi Kaufman led the Seder and was accompanied by wonderful Passover music provided by Ira Lacher, Laura Sparks, Sam Miller and Chuck Kuba. The kids always have a good time looking for the afikomen and the surprise gift afterwards! If you’ve never attended the Temple Passover Seder, I encourage you to bring your family and friends next year!

The Youth Group (grades 6th thru 12th) had a blast at their annual Mock Passover Seder! The Temple Youth Group enjoyed being with their friends, learning and celebrating the traditions of Passover. 

Shabbat on Friday nights is the highlight of the week. Stop by Temple at 5:30 p.m. to attend the wine and cheese reception before services, where it’s always nice to connect with new faces and old friends. Over the past year, our Temple board and other members have volunteered as greeters who welcome you and answer questions you may have about Temple. 

Family Shabbat takes place the first Friday of each month. Join Rabbi Kaufman for a family-friendly service where moms, dads, grandparents and the kids participate in the service by singing songs and reciting blessings. A highlight of the service is when Rabbi Kaufman gathers the kids around him for story time. After the service, a potluck dinner is served. Of course, you don’t need to be a kid to be at Family Shabbat. All ages are welcome!

On the third Friday of each month, the Sisterhood and Brotherhood get together after Shabbat services for Mahj and More! Whether playing a round of cards or sitting down to Mahjong, you’ll have a fun and relaxing night socializing with your friends. Bring your own game and have others join you. A light dinner and potluck dessert is served.

There are several events taking place Saturday mornings. Beginning at 9 a.m. there are two sessions of Torah Study; Traditional Torah Study and Weekly Text Study followed by a Shabbat service at 10 a.m. 

Last month, several conversions took place. A conversion is a special event for those that have converted to Judaism. Mazel tov to the Pletcher family, Samantha Kemp Carlin, Jane Tew and Betsy Pike who recently converted. We are so excited having you be a part of our Temple family!

The Sisterhood is always on the go with many events. One event is the Sisterhood Breakfast Club which takes place at the Windsor Heights Hy-Vee the second Monday of each month at 9:30 am.

The Men of TBJ Weekly Lunch has been a mainstay at Temple for the past two years. Every Wednesday 
at 11:30 a.m., the men of TBJ gather at a different restaurant chosen by Rabbi Kaufman for a quick bite and socializing. Check the Temple website to see where lunch takes place each week. 

Rabbi Kaufman offers a variety of adult education sessions each Thursday of the month. The first 
Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. is Rabbi’s Adult Education class. Last month, the topic was about the Holocaust. In May, topics include Angels in the Jewish Tradition and the Afterlife. Rabbi also leads his Ray Society class on the third Thursday of the month. In April, the discussion was about Understanding the World. In May, the topic Understanding the World continues.

The Sisterhood ladies meet the fourth Thursday of the month at 12 Noon at different restaurants around town for fun and stimulating conversation. Watch for updates on locations.

The Brotherhood recently held a meeting and social event at Dehner’s Distillery. Joe Dehner, a member of Temple, is the owner of Dehner’s Distillery in Clive. Joe provided a tour of his distillery, discussed the distillery process and shared samples of his products. More Brotherhood events are in the works so stay posted!

Interested in understanding what the Temple Board is currently addressing? TBJ Board Meetings typically meet the second Tuesday of each month.

So as you can see, there is always something for everyone at Temple! I encourage you to stop by and participate in the many events and activities. Always confirm the event on the Temple website for the latest listing of events and times. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact the Temple and speak with Erin Plank or David Muenchrath. Oh, and if you have any suggestions for events or programs, please let me know.

I look forward to seeing you soon at Temple!

B’Shalom, Alan Adato