This annual parish-wide day of service is held the third Saturday in October. Besides hundreds of people going to service sites, we provide the opportunity for a blood drive and special service projects for school age children. The day concludes with a community potluck. There is extensive publicity in the parish bulletin and registration is done after church and online in late September. The committee begins meeting in the spring.
So, you are asking: What’s a mitzvah?
"Mitzvah" is a Hebrew word that most commonly translates as "good deed" – a charitable, beneficial act for another.
The literal translation of the word, however, is "commandment." In Jewish tradition there are actually over 600 commandments. They include positive commandments (what to do) and negative commandments (what not to do).
Many of us in the western world are uncomfortable with the idea of being “commanded” to do anything, because it seems to deprive us of the right to choose how we behave. But the vast majority of the Jewish community today, from the orthodox to the reformed, have come to believe that obeying the commandments-- whether performing good deeds, complying to ritual laws, observing religious holidays, etc-- is not simply and blindly following the law for its own sake, but that these actions have a creative and positive impact not just in our own lives, but also in the fabric of our families, our community and for entire creation. In our own tradition, Jesus commands us to love one another and we know the creative and positive impact of that command!
Our Third Annual Mitzvah Day is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19th. Applications will be available beginning the weekend of Sept. 21-22. All are welcome to the parish potluck at 5:30 on Oct. 19th to conclude our Mitzvah Day.