Get Involved

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There are plenty of ways to participate at Congregation Solel. You can worship, engage in social justice activities and share in lifelong learning. You can also attend one of our many special events, join a committee or task force, or volunteer for project work.

There’s plenty here for everyone:

Youth Programs

Young Families

Empty Nesters

Interfaith Families

Chavurot

Getting Work Done

To discuss how you can get involved at Solel, please contact Rabbi Moffic, Geoff Prass (Director of Education), or Allan Litwack (Executive Director).

 

Youth Programs
Congregation Solel offers a variety of opportunities for youth outside of its Religious School programming. High School aged youth can participate in our NFTY-affiliated youth group, SolTY, Congregation Solel Temple Youth. This student board-led youth group hosts monthly Shabbat Lounge nights, social action events and philanthropy opportunities, as well as bi-monthly social events. Students also have opportunities to participate in NFTY (North American Federation of Temple Youth) retreats and conventions that host Jewish students from all over the Chicagoland area.

Students in grades 6 through 8, can participate in our Junior Youth Group, Solelim. Solelim has monthly Shabbat movie nights paired with a Social Action project like making PB&J sandwiches for P.A.D.S, a local homeless shelter. In addition, Solelim students have the opportunity to participate in NFTY’s yearly Junior Youth Group Kallah at OSRUI in Oconomowoc, WI.

For our younger grades, we offer bi-monthly holiday based programming at Congregation Solel after Religious School on Sundays. Past events have included Hamentashen Baking, Passover Pottery Painting, and Rosh Hashanah & Yom Kippur Activities during High Holiday services.

For more information or to attend an upcoming Youth event, contact Jen Daniels, Youth Coordinator at (847) 433-3417 or email at religious_school@solel.org.

 

Young Families
We know that many families first affiliate with a synagogue when their children reach Religious School age. If you consider yourself a young family, you'll find many opportunities to get involved at Solel. Join us at Simply Shabbats.Participate in lifelong learning. Attend one of our special events. Join a committee or task force. Consider joining one of our Chavurot.

 

Empty Nesters
Statistics show that many people lose interest in synagogue life after their children pass Religious School age. At Solel, there's no reason for that happen. Whether your last child just left for college, you've been an empty nester for years, or you're enjoying your retirement, there are many opportunities to stay involved. Join us at worship. Participate in lifelong learning. Attend one of our special events. Join a committee or task force. Consider joining one of our Chavurot.

 

Interfaith Families
When it comes to interfaith families, Solel has always had an open door and an open heart. In fact, Solel has been a leader in responding to this modern challenge. Our congregation embraces people of all faiths and aims to provide a spiritual home to Jew and non-Jew alike.

We do not view Interfaith outreach as a “concession.” At Solel, we believe that the deep faith of our members, the personal warmth of our community, and Solel's strong Jewish loyalty and ethical ideals offer the most compelling evidence of the meaningful role that Judaism can play in the lives of interfaith families.

 

Chavurot
Chavura is the Hebrew word for "fellowship." A chavura at Solel is a group of people who come together for the purpose of forming an "extended family" within our congregation. We like to think of it as a circle within a circle. By joining a chavura, congregants can strengthen their connection to the synagogue and build life-long friendships with people who share similar interests and are there for each other’s life events.

We have approximately 100 congregants participating in a number of chavurot. Some of those chavurot have been in place for over 40 years, while others for a much shorter period of time. We are constantly in the process of forming more. If you are interested in being part of a chavura, contact Allan Litwack.

 

Getting Work Done
One way to get involved at Congregation Solel is to help us get synagogue work done. There are two ways to do that: by volunteering to serve on a committee or a task force. A committee is a group of people who work on synagogue work on an ongoing basis; a task force, on the other hand, is a group of people assigned to work on a specific project with a beginning and an end. Here is a sampling of Solel committees and task forces. If you are interested in helping us get work done, click on the activity and someone will contact you soon.

 

Activity

Adult Choir - Sings at Days of Awe and Shabbat Eve services once a month

Adult Education - Plans and administers adult educational programming

Blood Drive - Organizes fall and spring blood drives at Solel

Capital Campaign Cabinet - Develops strategy for and implementation of Solel’s capital campaign

College - Connects college age students with Solel through communications and “care“ packages

Endowment Fund - Working with the Executive Director, ensures restricted Endowment Funds are properly invested (members appointed by the President)

Executive - Working with the President, the committee (consisting of officers) administers the affairs of Congregation between Board meetings, sets agenda for Board meetings, and makes recommendations Board; members must have Board or other leadership experience, be nominated by the Nominating Committee and approved by the Congregation

Finance - Working with the VP/Finance and Executive Director, serves as the financial steward of the congregation (members appointed by the President)

Fine Arts - Coordinates acquisition and display of art objects and makes recommendations regarding aesthetic issues relating to building

House - Oversees and develops plans for the building, grounds, equipment maintenance and improvements

Human Needs - Provides direction in giving of tzedaka through the Human Needs Fund, which helps Solel members who are in need of temporary and/or emergency service; supports local food pantries, shelters, health services, affordable housing programs, and other community programs

Membership - Promotes and conserves congregational membership through recruiting new members, welcoming new members, facilitating transition into Solel community and promoting continued affiliation

Mitzvah - Provides help and support networks to congregants facing illness and crises

Nominating - Working with the President, identifies congregants to serve on the Board and Religious School Committee and serves as resource in identifying congregants to serve in other capacities (members appointed by the President)

Religious School - Working with the VP/Religious School and Director of Education, provides guidance and oversight to school; members are nominated by Nominating Committee and approved by the Congregation

 

When the President determines a need for support on a special project, a task force is created. If you’ve completed the Solelite Survey, we’ll know more about your skills and interests and can invite you to participate in special projects that match your interests.