The Temple Torat Yisrael Conservative Jewish congregation of East Greenwich marked a significant milestone Sept. 30, as the community gathered with friends and dignitaries to dedicate the cornerstone of the new synagogue building in construction on Middle Road.
Sheltered from the rain in an open-sided tent at the edge of the construction site, close to a hundred people were greeted with a Hebrew song of welcome from the congregation’s children ranging from kindergarten through seventh grade.
Susan Smoller, president of the congregation, delivered greetings on behalf of the Torat Yisrael leadership and shared with the gathering the inspiring teamwork, collaborative spirit and determination within the Torat Yisrael community that made possible the morning’s momentous occasion: “This cornerstone dedication means that we have entered a new and final phase of our move. It means that soon we will be in the new building and celebrating our life cycle events there, as well as our daily events. This will be our home.”
Andrew G. Sholes, chairman of the Torat Yisrael Building Committee, reviewed the extensive work already achieved on the Middle Road site and outlined the schedule of the remaining months of work. The congregation anticipates celebrating the first bat mitzvah in their new building the second weekend in May 2013.
Rabbi Amy Levin related to the values upon which the Torat Yisrael community is based and with which the congregation dedicated their cornerstone: “We dedicate the cornerstone of our new synagogue building to serve as a perpetual symbol of our hopes and dreams for our community: a collective of Jews of all ages and stages of life; a community diverse in lifestyle, financial resources, educational levels, occupational pursuits ... coming together to live the most exciting, engaging Judaism we can imagine together.”