I have been involved with the JCM since 1984. We use to meet at each others houses and our torah was moved to different locations. I called it "Have torah will travel." The JCM has grown to where we are able to help many people in all situations. Having a building and a full time rabbi has put a huge strain on us financially. We are a community with a great heart, and great love for humanity. The most satisfying experience for me has occurred many times in the years since I have been on Maui. Many are the times when we help a fellow Jew and the family while visiting the island who has an emergency, usually life trhreatening health type, and our small, caring community mobilizes to help the family by providing assistance with their needs - spiritual, social, and financial. We are small; we are not too wealthy, but we give from the heart.
My involvement has been since it's inception. I am a better person fot it. This congregation can be supportive in all aspects of life.
In 1980, one could count the Jews of Maui on one's hands. Those of us who were parents or expected to be parents, wondered how our kids would have any idea of what it means to be a Jew. Today we have our Rabbi, our Beit Shalom (one of only two synagogues in the State of Hawaii), our cemetery and the opportunity to live as Jews from cradle to grave. The population of Maui has more than tripled since 1980 when most native to Maui, if they thought of Jews at all, pictured a people who only existed in the Old Testament of their Christian Bible. Today, most know us as a vital part of the immigration tapestry of our state. Like the Chinese, Japanese, Phillipino and others who (mostly) came before us, we are the people of Maui. On a small and relatively isolated island, the Maui community prospers by unity. Although JCOM was founded to serve the Jews of Maui, and continues in this role, I am proud that our organization can today serve the Maui community as well as our membership. JCOM faces daunting challenges. We have faced them before, we will face further challenges in the future. We no longer face them alone, however.