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Or Ami Happenings

Or Ami students celebrating Rosh Hashanah outside with fun activities.

Rosh Hashanah
at Or Ami

On Rosh Hashanah, 50 people joined us for a fun, family-oriented outdoor service with craft activities.
Kids made honey-colored slime and painted wooden apple picture frames to celebrate the New Year with sweetness and joy. Many more celebrated at home with a music-infused PDF of our Rosh Hashanah Family Service, written with the unique theme of healing as we said fare-well to a challenging year and expressed our collective hopes for a better new year.

Yom Kippur, Sukkot

On Yom Kippur, children learned about teshuvah (repentance) through reflective art activities and a creative “Mitzvah Darts” game.

Then on Sukkot, we celebrated our Opening Day of Religious School with entertaining holiday games and crafts in the Sukkah. Opening Day demonstrated the many precautions we are taking to protect the health of our students and teachers this year, including masking for all students and staff, outdoor classes, and social distancing.

Religious School

Not only do we have many safety procedures in place for this year, but Rabbi Ahuva wrote a special curriculum for the K-8 Religious School program addressing the unique social and emotional needs of children during the pandemic.

This curriculum focuses on the guidance that Judaism provides us through life’s ups and downs.

In the fall semester, children will study Jewish teachings related to various emotions, such as happiness (how do mitzvot help to create happiness?), sadness (how do we mourn when needed and comfort others?), anger (how do we man-age our anger constructively?), and gratitude (how can we find blessings and express gratitude in Jewish tradition?).

The spring semester brings students in our K-8 program learning about happy and sad Jewish life cycle events. Each class prepares a different model life cycle event, such as a baby naming, funeral, or wedding ceremony.

Our Torah Tots preschool program for children ages 3-5 will be learning about plants, animals, and people from a Jewish lens based on the Torah’s Creation story. If you would like your children or grandchildren to get a Jewish education in a fun, supportive, and caring community, there is still time to register and join our Religious School program.

For more information, you can con-tact Rabbi Ahuva through the Or Ami website or register here online: https://or-ami.com/registration/.

We are committed to making the safest environment possible by taking numerous precautions to protect the health of students and staff, including masking in indoor spaces with constant air filtration and utilizing outdoor spaces as often as the weather permits.

Help for Refugees

The evacuation of families from Afghanistan has brought many refugees to our area, and they need our help.  Local refugee resettlement agencies are challenged with finding housing, essentials, and jobs.

Money is required to cover housing costs (deposits and rent, and possibly helping new arrivals cover costs on meager salaries) yet the most valuable gift one can give to a new arrival is friendship.

Or Ami is planning to sponsor a family; group and individual assistance would be appreciated. There are opportunities for one-off activities and for ongoing relationships (tutoring English, taking them shopping, etc.) Or Ami will be working with the International Rescue Committee   https://www.rescue.org/announcement/home-community-family-sponsorship-program  in our congregational effort.  If you would like to learn more, contact VolunteerRichmond@rescue.org to explore a congregational response or work individually.

Congregants will also work with reestablishrichmond.org https://www.reestablishrichmond.org/, helping families after the end of their initial service (four months after arrival) and pairing individual volunteers with families.

ReR also teaches drivers training.  If you have a car to donate, it will enable a newcomer to access a job beyond the area’s limited bus lines and hours. If you have furniture to donate, please contact CARITAS:  https://www.caritasva.org/programs/furniture –   as they supply resettlement agencies with the basics to house new arrivals.

Shabbat Services

Our in-person Shabbat Services for masked, and fully vaccinated adults, are held Friday evenings from 7:30 to 8:30. Children may attend with their parents, and children over the age of 3 must wear a mask. Onegs are currently suspended.

You may view our services on YouTube or OrAmi’s Facebook page. Torah study (fully vaccinated and masked) is held in-person and virtually on most Saturdays at 11 am.

Links for our virtual Shabbat services and Torah study are sent via email on Fridays. If you would like to be added to the list, please email communicate@OrAmi.com.

Would you like to know more? Reach out to our office at (804) 272-0017 or communicate@Or-Ami.com, or check us out at www.Or-Ami.com. You can follow us on Facebook or catch us on Twitter. All inquiries are always welcome.