MT SINAI CONGREGATION
910 W. Randolph Street ∙ Wausau, WI 54401
E. Daniel Danson
(This is a recent article written for Jewish Values Online)
Is it proper to send an e-mail invitation to an unveiling?
Is it proper to send an email invitation to an unveiling? The short answer is yes, but it's worth looking at the question from two perspectives, that of who comes to an unveiling and as an issue of etiquette.
As has been pointed out in a number of JVO posts about unveilings, an unveiling is not a second funeral. In many ways it is an unusual ritual because even though it is very widely observed, there is no halakhic (Jewish legal) requirement to have one and therefore no formal rules about what needs to be done. All of which begs the question, what is so compelling about an unveiling and what does this tell us?
Most unveilings in America are done about a year after someone has died. Being together at an unveiling is a very different experience from that of a funeral. At an unveiling the mourners are not in the thrall of an immediate loss and often there has been a winnowing of memory. The meaning of a loved one’s life is becoming clearer and there is a kind of sharing that is different from that at a funeral. An unveiling often has a sense of intimacy and a spirit of continuity, which is its own way of honoring the memory of the deceased.
Which brings us to who should be notified about an unveiling. If either the person who is being mourned or the mourners are active in congregational life than it is appropriate to notify the community at large, either by way of the synagogue’s bulletin or through one of the many kinds of current social media. Email is a very effective way reaching a more intimate circle of friends and family, but one should be wary of the many ways that an email can appear impersonal or even slapdash. If your family is in the habit of sending out notices about family events by way of a general email, then that would be appropriate. If not, out of respect to the person you will be honoring, you should send personally addressed emails. When in doubt always err to the more personal, especially for a ritual as solemn and intimate as an unveiling.
Lastly there is the question of whether or not you need a minion. The ritual of an unveiling ideally includes kaddish and when at all possible, one should gather together a minion. Therefore, if one has a very small family, the notification needs to broad enough to try and assemble 10 adult Jews. In today’s world, email can be a particularly good way of doing this, but again, the more personal the email the more likely it is to speak to people about the importance of their role in helping round out the minion and their importance to you.
STEVENS POINT FAMILY SHABBAT
A Family Shabbat and potluck brunch will be held in the home of Shanny and Kimberly Luft, in Stevens Point on Saturday, December 7 at 10:30 am.
SERVICE/TORAH PORTION DISCUSSION
A Shabbat Service and Torah Portion Discussion will be held on Saturday, December 21st at 10:00 am.
COLLEGE REUNION SHABBAT
A Shabbat service will be held on Friday, December 27th at 7:30 pm. We will be honoring our returning college students. We look forward to seeing you again!
The Wausau Community Warming Center re-opened its doors for the 2013-14 winter season. They are able to offer a hot meal, shower, laundry services and a place to get in out of the cold to our community’s homeless. You can still join the many wonderful community volunteers who keep the doors of the Warming Center open. Learn how to volunteer or make a monetary donation at www.cclse.org. Your support is greatly appreciated!
To: Bill and Gail Skelton for hosting the Point Shabbat on Nov. 1.
To: David & Linda Bluestein, Joyce Louis and Rachel Tate for hosting the Oneg Shabbat on Nov. 8.
To: Randy and Robyn Chip for hosting the Point Family Shabbat on Nov 9.
To: Mel Golden and Dan Danson and Julie Luks for hosting kiddish on Nov. 16.
To: Jenny Gordon, for setting up the Chanukah Gift Shop.
RABBI’S DISCRETIONARY FUND
Bernard Eisenburg, In appreciation
Janet Cohodas, In honor of Ann Cohodas
Charles Long, In appreciation
Leo Powers, In appreciation
Debbie Ginsburg, In memory of her father
Pamela Natarus and Ace Gray, In memory of Ralph Natarus
Ernest and Kathy Foley, In memory of Randy Schiffman’s father
Looking for Fun Chanukah Items?
Look no further. The Mt. Sinai Gift Shop is full of great Chanukah items. Everything you need for a successful holiday celebration is here, like dreidels, menorahs, candles, banners and gelt. Out of the ordinary items include gel clings , puzzles, pencils, desktop games, chocolate molds and water globes. There are items to help fry up those latkes like spatulas, serving utensils, aprons and hot pads. Come see the assortment and support Mt. Sinai’s Gift Shop!
Mt. Mt. Sinai Congregation
910 W. Randolph Street
Wausau, WI 54401
Return Service Requested
Office Hours: Tues, Wed, & Fri 9am to 2pm