Hesed Community of Temple Sholom

Hesed is a Hebrew word that denotes loving kindness. Gemilut hasadim, acts of loving kindness, are those caring deeds that expand and enrich the boundaries of our generosity and provide support to one another where it is desirable.

Acts of hesed are not selfless acts. They require some time and energy, and they come with surprising benefits to those who perform them, as well as to the recipients. Thoughtful service to others allows us a way to give thanks for our blessings, develop new relationships, fulfill all those promises we really meant on Yom Kippur, and perhaps even gain insights into the meaning of our lives.

Our Hesed Community encourages and enables you to reach out and offer your assistance to fellow congregants experiencing times of challenge, need or celebration. Your participation can be for as much or as little time as you wish to give, and can be on-going, occasional or even just once. It is up to you. You will never be pressured to go beyond your comfort zone, and you will receive orientation appropriate to the programme(s) you choose.

We try our best to provide these services:

A visit to someone confined by illness to home or hospital provides an uplift that extends far beyond the brief time it occupies. Volunteers make up bags of useful items that say, “we care” to take along on visits. We furnish guidelines for a positive visiting experience.

A personally delivered challah offers comfort to the bereaved immediately following a funeral. This home-baked challah is round to symbolize the eternal cycles of life, braided to represent the people who come together in support, and is sprinkled with herbs and zahatar from Israel, in the wish that memories of the deceased be pleasant and sustaining.

Regular friendly contact by phone or Internet can be a lifeline for someone confined to home.

Congregants who have joined our prayer circle include in their personal worship healing prayers for individuals experiencing a health crisis or other severe life challenge. If you wish to place a name on the prayer list or are interested in participating in the Chevrah Tefillah, please contact Barbara Halparin at hesed@templesholom or 604.266.6953, or call the office at 604.266.7190.

Conducted each year during Yom Kippur afternoon, the inspiring Service for the Healing of the Soul combines prayer, contemplative music and guided imagery meditation to help congregants develop a sense of wholeness, strength and inner peace during times of “dis-ease.”

Sending a card or making a call to welcome a new baby, or offer congratulations for an engagement or wedding, a Bat or Bar Mitzvah, or any special accomplishment increases the joy of any celebration.

Prayer and community are important contributors to the healing process. At Temple Sholom mi-shebeirachs, traditional prayers for healing, are regularly offered at morning minyan and Shabbat services on behalf of individuals in need. Mi-shebeirach recipients may also be sent a beautiful card, which serves as a tangible reminder that they are being held in the thoughts of others. If you know of someone who could benefit from a mi-sherbeirach, please contact Rabbi Dan Moskovitz: rabbidan@templesholom.ca, Rabbi Carey Brown: rabbibrown@templesholom.ca. or call the Temple office: 604.266.7190.

A personally delivered package of battery-operated candles, grape juice and challah is a meaningful way to bring the holiness and peace of Shabbat to hospitalized congregants.

The library offers books about Jewish prayer and tradition, as well as practical information regarding marriage, family dynamics, divorce, illness, medical treatments, pain therapy, meditation, nutrition, exercise, death and grief.

Individuals who are housebound or in the hospital are now able to participate in Temple Sholom worship services via their computers. Please make arrangements through the office: 604.266.7190.

Do not doubt that you can make a difference!

Contact Barbara Halparin at hesed@templesholom.ca or 604.266.6953