Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Borough of Churches

This Friday night, Kol Zimrah is having its fourth Friday night service and dinner in Brooklyn! The Brooklyn branch of KZ is neither a spinoff (like KZ Jerusalem) nor colonization by Manhattanites -- it's a bottom-up grassroots effort from Brooklynites who have been and continue to be active in Kol Zimrah west of the river.

KZB will be at Congregation Beth Elohim, which to my knowledge holds the current record for hosting the largest number of independent minyanim (three: Kol Zimrah, Park Slope Minyan, and Altshul, never meeting at the same time). Kudos to CBE for their support of independent Jewish life. Kudos also to Kol Zimrah's Manhattan hosts, the Society for the Advancement of Judaism and the Jewish Home & Hospital.

This Friday is particularly exciting for me personally, because I have been to 57 out of 57 Kol Zimrah services, and after almost 4 years, number 58 is the first one I'm going to miss. When KZ is rocking the house in Brooklyn, I plan to be sound asleep in Haifa (where it's 7 hours later). It seems like ancient history now, but I can remember a time when Kol Zimrah depended on a few key people to keep it running. Since then, an amazing group of people has stepped up to provide leadership to KZ, and there are no indispensable individuals; leadership is distributed throughout the community. After this Friday, no one will have been to every single KZ service.

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