What an amazing service to welcome Shabbat at NFTY Convention! The voices of over 700 teens, youth workers, and friends of NFTY joined together with the beautiful music of Alan Goodis, Danielle Rodnizki, and Ryan Leszner.
Adding to the uplifting and spiritual tone of the evening were the visual images and the text of the prayers displayed on the extra large screens at the front of the room. These images, inspired by the prayers and the theme of the service, and planned with the help of the services leaders and Rabbi Ana Bonnheim, helped focus our eyes and our intentions during the service.
Having the liturgy of the service up on the screen freed the hands of the NFTYites for clapping, swaying, and dancing in the aisles. The ruach in the room was palpable.
Of course, for those who value holding a siddur in their hands, a special sneak preview of Mishkan T’filah Journal, special NFTY Convention edition, were given out. (On Shabbat morning, NFTYites actually used the MT Journals to add their own thoughts, poems, and readings to write themselves into the siddur.)
In a first for Visual T’filah, because of the amazing AV crew and the extensive gear, the text of the prayers was interspersed with live video feeds of the service leaders and the community. This added an amazing element to Visual T’filah, that will hopefully become easier for smaller communities to do on their own in the future. In the meantime, it’s a special treat reserved for NFTY Convention!