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  1. Marjorie Hanft
    January 13, 2010 at 9:22 am

    For those of us who live in places where the ratio of Jews to non-Jews is similar to the ratio of us to those of other faiths in the world, social networking can help keep us connected. When I look at my FB friends, the list is heavily weighted with my autism mom friends, my Jewish friends from then and now including Habonim folks I haven’t seen in forever and Hadracha chums from ’08, former students, Beloit friends I haven’t seen in forever, and family who live far away as well as members of the Mattoon JCC who have moved away and former student rabbis whom we were tremendously lucky to have. In this mobile and fragmented world, there is something to be said for continuity, even though I do believe real one:one contact is important. If I didn’t believe that, I wouldn’t be working on a dvar to lead a service in my little shul in the church on Friday night.

  2. January 17, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    Good point, Marjorie. I had a larger Jewish community in mind when I was writing. I do think technology is particularly useful in small communities where it’s hard to pull together enough people for a class or a minyan. (I remember my Yom Kippur as student rabbi in Mattoon, when we had 6 people! It was the smallest service of the year, since so many went to visit family in other places.) You’re right that it can’t replace real human contact, but it can serve an important purpose. Best to everyone at MJCC.

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