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Yom Shabbat, 3 Tishri 5778

A Brief History

In the wake of the tragic shooting in Tucson, Arizona, in 2011, a dialogue began at the Temple. Incivility, lack of respect for divergent opinions, political polarization, anger and frustration were infecting our world from our nation's capital to our own community. Our congregation's response was to create Love Thy Neighbor; an annual series of programs that sought to move our region toward the kind of community our children deserve.

Over the last three years Love Thy Neighbor has included a major community program a couple of staple programs that continue to grow in popularity. A diverse group of community clergy joins Rabbi Joshua Taub for what has become our annual Love Thy Neighbor Interfaith Sabbath Celebration. Rabbi Taub created a special interfaith service incorporating prayers, reflections and meditations from a wide range of religious sources. Our "house musicians" create a spiritual environment that stirs the soul, stimulates the mind and opens the heart to welcome the blessings of community and the divine.

Our second Love Thy Neighbor staple program is our annual Days of Remembrance Holocaust Memorial Observance. With resources provided by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, we explore a theme or an idea born out of the Holocaust that provides an opportunity for memorial and reflection as well as an opportunity to learn important lessons that inform the mission of Love Thy Neighbor. Rabbi Taub and a diverse group local interfaith clergy lead our annual Holocaust Memorial Observance.

Rabbi Taub has said on more than one occasion:

"Everywhere we are, it is still Egypt. Our goal for Love Thy Neighbor is nothing short of moving Southeast Texas to become the kind of community our children deserve. And they deserve nothing short of a normal world: a region where every individuals are affirmed; where civility and respect govern our discourse; where discrimination and inequity are eradicated; where understanding and imagination are the rule. Love Thy Neighbor is a big idea – we know. We just hope it is big enough."

All Love Thy Neighbor programs are free of charge and open to the public.

For Information about Love Thy Neighbor 2013 click here