Our vision for the community is to be the engine that drives forward Judaism into South Hertfordshire. It is also to help BES define itself as a Centrist Orthodox community and to be an example and inspiration to other aspiring Centrist Orthodox communities in Britain. By this we mean that we are open to Jews of all walks of life by teaching and inspiring; not judging and condemning. That we are open to the secular world and appreciate that there is wisdom, goodness and value to be learned from all people and experiences. That we are committed to Tikun Olam; repairing our imperfect world by being civically active and engaging with issues such as the environment and social justice, and last but not least, that we are passionately committed to the State of Israel.
We am particularly keen on developing the community in three areas.
Torah: To become a community that appreciates the primacy of Talmud Torah and the important role it plays in helping to nourish our intellect. It is our goal to create wide ranging educational programmes and to encourage all our members – men and women – not just to study, but to teach Torah as well.
Avodah: While this term generally refers to passionate prayer, we would extend it to the passionate performance of all Mitzvot. One of the challenges of being fully observant is that Mitzvot tend to become routine. It is our goal to try and infuse a sense of spirituality and passion in the way we perform Mitzvot. In particular, we would like members to feel genuinely uplifted during prayer.
Gemilut Chassadim: Acts of kindness or social action. We must ensure that all of our members are cared for and that their needs are met. Friendship clubs, welfare services, job networking, career counselling are just some examples of what could be part of an extensive social action programme. While the community is our first priority it is also important to get involved in broader social and environmental issues such as campaigning against racism, poverty and protecting the environment.
Finally, it is our goal to ensure that our community is in a constant state of renewal. We must not become complacent. Instead we must strive to discover new dimensions and possibilities. Our Hebrew motto is Hitchadshut Temidit roughly translated into English as "Seeing the Familiar through Fresh Eyes".
We invite you to join us in this great and exciting challenge.