This week marks a year since my family and I arrived in Milwaukee and to Congregation Shir Hadash. It has been a lovely year and we are grateful be here and looking forward to year two!
If you check out you Milwaukee Jewish Chronicle you will find my column on the challenge of the conflicting calendars in summertime. As Americans, especially this week, we are all about rest, leisure, and barbecues. The Jewish calendar spends these same months counting the days leading to disaster as we remember the destruction of the temples and myriad other Jewish catastrophes. In the article I suggest that today we need to use this day to look beyond our own stories and history and respond with empathy to those of our neighbors as well.
Of course, this includes the disasters unfolding around us daily, so this year mid-summer mourning does not feel so far off. I was honored to represent Shir at the immigration rallies last shabbat and pleased that both Susie Stein and I made the local paper and national media with our experiences as the child/grandchild of immigrants. We have a lot of work to do to assure that our nation’s sick be healed, captives be freed, and those bent down be brought upright.
Looking forward, I hope many of you will join us for the special program on the Israeli-Palestinian crisis on the 9th and invite friends who will be interested. And it is an important time for us all to have opportunities to be with nurtured, fed, and connected, so I hope someone is inspired to host our community table on July 13th. Please let me know!
One year together – so exciting, right? Did you know Rabbi David and Sandy are celebrating 50 this shabbat? Come join them, and your Shir chevre this Friday at 7 in our usual space. It will be good to bring our hearts, souls, and voices together in prayer and community.