After completing the B’Nei Mitzvah program, Machar teens have opportunities to volunteer in Jewish Cultural School classes and on behalf of the congregation, helping to organize community service activities including annual events such as our creek cleanup, Walk for the Homeless, food drives, and book sales.
We also encourage teens to participate in the larger Humanistic teen movement and send a chaperoned group to the Society for Humanistic Judaism’s annual “Hu Jews” Teen and Young Adult Conclave, held in a different city each year.
Hu Jews Conclave 2014
On March 28th, eight of Machar’s teens traveled to Boston, Massachusetts for the Society for Humanistic Judaism (SHJ) Conclave. SHJ Conclave brings together young Secular Humanistic Jews from across the country for a weekend of service, study, and relationship-building. The theme of this year’s Conclave, led by Rabbi Goldfinger from Toronto, was connections – connections between people, nature, and animals – and the different ways to bond with those who are different. The weekend included services projects at Boston-based organizations. Among other projects, teenagers from Machar picked up trash along the Charles River, organized the food pantry at the Red Cross, and wrote cards to victims of homelessness. In addition, the teens celebrated Shabbat, explored historic Boston, and discussed different ways to recognize Judaism in their lives. The teens look forward to next year’s Conclave to reconnect with their friends, contribute to the community, and learn more about Secular Humanistic Judaism. — Seth Garfinkel, 2014 Conclave Chaperone