By Jackie Kligerman
I have belonged to several synagogues through the years and became very involved in them all, taking a leadership role in addition to participating in services and programs. I had a strong background in Hebrew and Jewish history, and furthered it by studying and learning to conduct services, read Torah and chant Haftarah. I was proud and excited to be doing this as an adult. But the positives of all of this were countered by my experiences with the politics of typical synagogue life; membership and budget issues seemed to override the needs of the community, and it seemed that the personal agendas of people in leadership all too often failed to reflect the concerns and desires of the temple members at large. I needed a community - to be a part of a group of Jewish people who came together for worship and friendship.