Special to the Ledger
Rabbi Gary Lavit, the chaplain at Hebrew Health Care (HHC) in West Hartford for more than 25 years, had a problem. A number of HHC residents want to attend and experience Shabbat services, but they cannot actively contribute to it. How could he give them the experience of an enthusiastic Shabbat service, with a congregation of active participants who can sing and daven and who enjoy doing so with spirit?
And so, he contacted Rabbi Gary Atkins of Beth Hillel Synagogue in Bloomfield. Would Atkins’ Conservative congregation be willing to “move” their Shabbat morning service to HHC on an occasional basis? he asked. It would be a special mitzvah.
Rabbi Atkins thought it was a worthwhile idea and shared it with his synagogue Ritual Committee and Board of Directors, who affirmed the value of doing this service. For his part, Rabbi Lavit was willingto have the service conducted in accordance with the traditions of the Conservative movement.
“This will enable our elderly to have the pleasure of ‘going to shul’ and enjoying the experience of a Shabbat morning service… something that they cannot experience at present,” says Lavit.
The first Beth Hillel service at HHC will be held on Saturday, Oct. 26 at 9:45 a.m. Anyone interested in attending this special service – and participating in a mitzvah – is invited to do so.
For further information call (860) 242-5561.