to Congregation Cnesses Israel (CCI)!
The Hebrew Cnesses Israel means a "gathering for the people
of Israel". The Sentiment is beautiful and noteworthy.
First, it is a place where we come together as a community. CCI is the
second home for all of us. For those who have been attending their whole
lives and whose ancestors founded the synagogue over 100 years ago - to
guests walking through the doors for the first time - all find CCI to
be a compassionate, loving, and embracing community. All who enter are
Second, CCI is a gathering place for anyone. People of all faiths and
traditions are welcome - whether you are a Jew, someone who cares about
the Jewish community, or someone interested in learning more about our
faith and practice. CCI is not a place exclusively for jews, but rather
a place where we can all come together to experience Jewish life
Finally, it is telling that
the name of our synagogue, Congregation Cnesses Israel, borrows from the
Hebrew phrase for a synagogue, beit cnesset. Indeed, a synagogue
is not simply a House of Prayer. While prayer is a central function of
CCI, it is not all that we are about. We learn. We celebrate Shabbat and
holidays. We eat. We have carnivals, picnics, book groups, and bowling
outings. We delight when our children run, laugh, and play. We are a gathering
for all life has to offer.
So please feel free at any time to come and join us, to find out more
about our community, and to give us the opportunity to extend our family
welcome to you.
Rabbi Moishe Steigmann