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Old 11-24-2016, 02:18 PM
 
1,528 posts, read 1,046,468 times
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I have a friend who is Jewish and is not very well off.

He doesn't attend regularly but was coming to a synagogue in North Raleigh for the high holy days and leaving a small donation every year.

He was asked to pay $300 this year but did not have the money. He was then sent a letter and asked to pay $300 for the worship he attended.

He showed me the letter and asked if they could sue him if he didn't pay. I told him these people were not religious and it was not worth honoring such an insane request.

In fact, I mentioned that many churches end their invitation sign with the words "all are welcome".

Does anyone know a synagogue in the area focused on religion, not business?
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Old 11-24-2016, 08:25 PM
 
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Our kids went to Beth El in Durham this year (Beth El Synagogue Durham, NC | Worship, Education) and seemed to enjoy it. Based on this & other people we know who go there, he might give it a try. It would not be in keeping with the practice of any congregation that we have ever encountered to come after him for the money for previous services. They might refuse him a ticket for next year though. HH services are the only ones where there are charges for tickets; some congregations include this in their annual dues while it is an "add-on" at others. (Note that synagogues do not tithe or pass a collection plate, but charge members annual dues instead.)

He could also consider the Hillel chapters at either NCSU or Duke. They can be wonderful for HH services and usually offer a variety of services at no or little cost. Usually there is no requirement to be a student to attend HH services.

Last edited by Prumio; 11-24-2016 at 09:05 PM..
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Old 11-25-2016, 02:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Prumio View Post
Our kids went to Beth El in Durham this year (Beth El Synagogue Durham, NC | Worship, Education) and seemed to enjoy it. Based on this & other people we know who go there, he might give it a try. It would not be in keeping with the practice of any congregation that we have ever encountered to come after him for the money for previous services. They might refuse him a ticket for next year though. HH services are the only ones where there are charges for tickets; some congregations include this in their annual dues while it is an "add-on" at others. (Note that synagogues do not tithe or pass a collection plate, but charge members annual dues instead.)

He could also consider the Hillel chapters at either NCSU or Duke. They can be wonderful for HH services and usually offer a variety of services at no or little cost. Usually there is no requirement to be a student to attend HH services.
Thanks.

That letter blew me away. Hope the synagogue understands the negative implications if the letter was posted on social media.

You'd think charity would apply, with a few seats reserved for those who were unable to donate.
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Old 11-25-2016, 05:29 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
1,201 posts, read 829,539 times
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Pay to pray? One of the problems with organized religion....
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Old 11-25-2016, 06:01 AM
 
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Wow - that's really sad. He is welcome any time to attend services at Beth Shalom in Cary. Please extend to him the welcome.
Our services are at 7:30 Friday nights except for the first Friday of the month which is "family service" and starts at 7pm.
He can tell anyone at the door that English Kate sent him Oh - we don't charge for High Holiday admission either.

I did want to add that it is a lot harder for synagogues to operate than Churches as the pool of donors is WAY WAY smaller. It took us 7 years to raise enough money to build a dedicated sanctuary and we are still in a deficit. I have seen local area churches raise enough money to extend in a single weekend. In fact, Hope Community just built a new church near me in Apex which contains a gym, pool, as well as TONS of classroom space and a huge worship room.

Anyway - just wanted to add that so people understand that it's not a business, but there are big costs involved...
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Old 11-25-2016, 07:40 AM
 
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I guess I don't understand the negative implications; if I offended, it was not my intent. Synagogues generally operate on an independent funding model, which is different from many other denominations: they do not have umbrella organizations such as the Catholic Diocese or similar that funds local congregations. Instead, they typically have a membership structure to fund the operating costs...And ALL churches, synagogues, temples, etc. have operating costs. To pretend otherwise seems specious. Membership structures definitely take into account the issue of varying incomes and ability to pay...No member would be turned away because they cannot pay.

It is my understanding that many religious organizations support themselves by congregational donations plus funds from their umbrella organization. That's great. Other denominations do it differently. I hope that clarifies and, again, no intent to offend.
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Old 11-25-2016, 08:14 AM
 
1,528 posts, read 1,046,468 times
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Originally Posted by DJKB View Post
Wow - that's really sad. He is welcome any time to attend services at Beth Shalom in Cary. Please extend to him the welcome.
Our services are at 7:30 Friday nights except for the first Friday of the month which is "family service" and starts at 7pm.
He can tell anyone at the door that English Kate sent him Oh - we don't charge for High Holiday admission either.

I did want to add that it is a lot harder for synagogues to operate than Churches as the pool of donors is WAY WAY smaller. It took us 7 years to raise enough money to build a dedicated sanctuary and we are still in a deficit. I have seen local area churches raise enough money to extend in a single weekend. In fact, Hope Community just built a new church near me in Apex which contains a gym, pool, as well as TONS of classroom space and a huge worship room.

Anyway - just wanted to add that so people understand that it's not a business, but there are big costs involved...
Great to hear. I'll tell him.

I fully understand how any religious organization has bills to pay and must generate income.

Charity, of course, is one of the things that should be done with the money. Many churches, not affiliated with sponsoring organizations, collect for benevolence. Certainly, allowing someone to attend a special service would justify for a use of benevolence.

Someone in NYC told me that their Manhattan synagogue always has one service time during the high holy days where all are welcome and may donate according to their ability,
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Old 11-25-2016, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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He absolutely needs to try Chabad. There is one in North Raleigh and one in Cary.

Jewish Raleigh Online- Chabad Center Sha'arei Israel Synagogue NC
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Old 11-25-2016, 02:34 PM
 
1,528 posts, read 1,046,468 times
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Originally Posted by Ellen Pitts View Post
He absolutely needs to try Chabad. There is one in North Raleigh and one in Cary.

Jewish Raleigh Online- Chabad Center Sha'arei Israel Synagogue NC
Thanks. He lives in North Raleigh near me.
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Old 11-29-2016, 04:56 AM
 
Location: Orlando, Florida (for now)
29 posts, read 26,960 times
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Do you think a Jewish family coming from Argentina will be welcomed? Although we have so many Synagogues from different denominations in Buenos Aires, system seems similar and sadly, not open to everyone unless you show proper credentials or references...and regarding people most of them are quite judgmental. Besides the institutional fact, is the Jewish community socially opened to newcomers?
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