Monday, February 13, 2012

February update -- regional meeting and initiatives

Members of the Congregation Tifereth Israel Men's Club and their friends celebrate the World Wide Wrap on Feb. 5, 2012.

I hope everyone is having a wonderful winter season. The region continues to be busy.

On January 22, 2012, we had our regional meeting, followed by the first regional poker tournament. Some of the things we covered were:

1. Shomrei Ha’aretz. That includes solar ner tamids, eco-friendly place settings for meals, soy candles, reusable bottles and vegetable gardens. But the FJMC intends to continue to expand its commitment to being a steward of the land. In that vein, it has put together a committee to look at new and innovative ways to expand our programming. So we are looking for a volunteer from any club in the region to serve as our representative on this committee. Please contact me if someone in your club who is “green” sensitive would be interested.

2. By October 15, 2012, we need to identify the next Ma’asim Tovim winner from this region. Ma’asim Tovim stands for doer of good deeds. And we look to name someone who has performedsignificant work for their club and the region. Prior winners include Mike Mills, Michael Steinbuch,Gary Smith and Mark Rosenson. I am asking that regional members provide me, by August 15, with names of those that you think are worthy of this award. A committee of the prior winners will then select the honoree.

3. We went through in detail how to complete a Quality Club Award. This award is attainable for most of the clubs in our region. If a member of your club did not attend the meeting, then I will try and follow up with you within the next month to go through the process of applying for a quality club award.

4. Dr. Dale Levy explained our new Men's Health Initiative. It will involve creating a website that will be a one-stop source for information on nutrition and dieting. Based upon that, we will create a competition. Teams of 5 will compete against one another in a weight-loss competition. The goal is to have each member lose the lesser of 15 pounds or enough to reach his ideal body weight. The winning team will receive a stipend to attend the regional retreat or the Man of the Year lunch. More information will follow in the next few months.

5. Yellow Candle Program – candles can still be purchased. So please contact me if your club has not already purchased candles. Mark Ebner then spoke regarding a Holocaust Educational Garden to be built in Columbus, Ohio. The proceeds from the sale of yellow candles in Columbus (outside of sales by the Tifereth Israel and Agudas Achim Mens Clubs) will go toward this worthy project.

6. Dr. Gary Smith then took us through an excellent discussion and summary regarding the Keruv program and its benefits to your club, synagogue and the Conservative movement as a whole. If you are interested in bringing/expanding Keruv within your club please contact me.

7. Dr. Gary Smith also led a Hearing Mens Voices Program. Hearing Mens Voices is one of the best programs developed and implemented by the FJMC. You have a group of your club members get together and discuss issues which effect all of them. For example, the discussion we had was on when you had the darkest period of your life, how you came out of it and if there was a mentor to lead you. Other programs I have been involved in include, how to deal with difficult teenagers, and how to deal with aging parents. This program not only allows you to learn about other club members but allows you to learn how to address issues in your own life through discussion with people who have common issues and experiences. I would highly recommend that each club look into developing this program within your club. If you are interested, please contact me.

Looking forward, the FJMC Executive Board will be coming to Columbus, Ohio, April 27 through the 29th. Friday night services and dinner will be at Agudas Achim in Columbus, Ohio.On the 28th, one third of the group will attend Shabbat services at Tifereth, one-third at Agudas Achim and one-third at Beth Abraham in Dayton. On Sunday, we will be having a regional meeting in conjunction with the Executive Board. All club officers are invited and encouraged to attend. More details will be forthcoming.

On May 20th, we will be coming to the time trials at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Please let all of the members of your club know. We look forward to having a large group.

At the end of October or in early November, we will be having a regional retreat at Oglebay Resort & Conference Center in Wheeling, W.Va. We will have a golf outing that Friday morning just before the retreat. The retreat is an excellent opportunity for you to learn about FJMC programming and how to make your club stronger. All members of the region are invited to attend.

Talk with you soon.


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