While Beit T’Shuvah’s multipurpose sanctuary wears many different hats, on Saturday it wore a feathered fedora for Rabbi Mark Borovitz’s 60th birthday party, transforming the sanctuary/dining hall into something barely recognizable. The doors opened to a dimly lit room with small lounge tables speckling the floor, black curtains adorning the walls and tables, and a full booze-less bar complete with cocktails such as the ‘Fuzzy Harriet’ and ‘Lonely Addicts Iced Tea.’
Rabbi’s gangster-themed “Roast and Toast” birthday party turned the Beit T’Shuvah sanctuary into a speakeasy, with guests dressed as 1920’s flappers and mob bosses. Only at Beit T’Shuvah is it possible to roast your boss and spiritual leader in his own rehab-cum-barlounge. While the décor was incredible, the Shirley Temples were delicious, and the food was scrumptious, the entertainment was the highlight of the evening. Rabbi’s friends, family, and employees took turns serenading and addressing their Rabbi, their boss, their mentor, their husband, and their father. Unconditional love for the man responsible for the redeemed souls in the room shined through the biting wit of each speech.
Rabbi’s birthday party reflected the enigmatic nature of Beit T’Shuvah. It is a rehab that treats the deadly illness of addiction, but it is also a community with a sense of humor. Beit T’Shuvah is able to let its hair down and poke fun of its spiritual leader, while praising him for his hard work, patience, and accomplishments.
p.s. Rest assured, the Rabbi took the roast in stride, so the employee count remained the same on Monday.