…you ask, “What can I do for the shul”
…you make the effort to come out for membership meeting
…you’re really concerned about the Shul making the budget
…you’re willing to be an officer or some other important position every 10 years
…you try to daven at your Shul as often as possible
…you try to encourage new members to join
…you’re appreciative and supportive of your president and officers
…you phrase your complaints in a positive and constructive way
…you’re committed to the Shul for the long term
…you’re kind to the treasurer, if they make a mistake
The more valuable you are to the Shul, the more valuable the Shul will be for you.
10 thoughts on “You’re a Valuable Shul Member if….”
 You are a valuable shul member if you do NOT talk in shul.
 You are a valuable shul member if you are the only Kohen or only Levi.
 You are a valuable shul member if you help clean the shul, even without being asked.
 You are a valuable shul member if you always arrive on time, or even better, if you arrive early.
 You are a valuable shul member if you give Jews free lessons on how to recite the Jewish prayers correctly.
 You are a valuable shul member if you do NOT fight over windows (opening or closing them) or adjusting the air conditioner.
 You are a valuable shul member if you help supply the shul bathrooms with: toilet paper, tissues, soap, working light bulbs and paper towels, even without being asked.
 You are a valuable shul member if you do NOT bring disruptive children to shul (99.9% of children are disruptive, even though every Jewish parent believes that his or her children are the most special children in the world.)
The only way kids will ever learn to behave in Shul is to come and participate and see
how the parents act. If they dont come when they’re young what makes you think that they’ll come as young adults or as adults. Its really more important for children to come to Shul then some kvetcher.
Opponents of bringing young children to synagogue include:
Tanna DeBei Eliyahu Raba, Chapter 13, Paragraph 8
Sefer HaShelah HaKodesh on tractate Tamid, Chapter Ner Mitzvah, Siman 76
Magen Avraham on Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim, Siman 124, Sif Katan 11
Magen Avraham on Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim, Introduction to Siman 589
Mishnah Berurah on Orach Chaim, Siman 98, Sif 1, Sif Katan 3
Mishnah Berurah on Orach Chaim, Siman 124, Sif 7, Sif Katan 28
Mishnah Berurah on Orach Chaim, Siman 689, Sif 6, Sif Katan 18
Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski MD
I could easily provide the full text of all these quotes, if I thought that anyone would actually listen.
Piskei Siddur Admor Hazaken (baal Shulchan Aruch HaRav)
Mark, thank you for giving a postive list of great and real-life guidelines.
Mr. Cohen, regarding bringing kids to shul, I suggest you take a look at the Artscroll biography of RSRH regarding his rule in the Realshule for kids. After living in Indianapolis from 1998-2006, with only 30 frum families, I am always happy to go to a shul and see and hear children. I understand that decorum is key in a makom tefillah, but most of life involves interaction and distractions. Even Shimon Bar Yochai had the company of his son in their cave.
Another thing I aways think about whenever a child disrupts shul (I know that I’m highjacking the topic of this post) is that only two generations ago, any Jew would have been happy to see kids running in a shul, while under the cloud of Hitler.
I would suggest some thoughts on how to make a shul function as an inclusive place which is a true resource for uniting the social ties and community strength of its community.
…it’s kind of funny how this post doesn’t really go towards that topic so much, imho. just mentioning that, no biggie.
Your’e a valuable shul member if you don’t put your baby on the table with the seforim during davening.
If you bring children to shul that are too young to behave, you are only teaching them that shul is a place where you can behave like a child. Do you bring your children to a meeting with your boss?
You’re a valuable shule member if you daven for the amud when asked.
You’re a valuable shule member if you realize that your chiyuv to daven may not be as important as someone else’s chiyuv.
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