I own a paperback copy of Elie Wiesel’s Messengers of God: Biblical Portraits and Legends. It sits on my library shelf next to many other books he authored. But this book is wrapped in order to protect the inscription on the first page; the cover is partly detached, and worn. Continue reading
We could have asked those present to sit or stand quietly for just a few moments. We so rarely offer ourselves the silence we need.
When the two elderly men made their way to the stage, I wanted to stand. I wanted us all to stand, in silent recognition of the story they carry, the narrative they tell. Continue reading
Three crowns stood above the first two words of the Song. The first was drawn by Ruth Kingberg, together with Neil, just months before she died. At the time she could barely stand, but when we told her we would bring the scroll to her home, she dressed herself beautifully. Continue reading
In the immediate aftermath of death, life is undone. The world of the living persists but its existence is surreal. We long for our beloved; we are conscious only of our loss. Our mourning takes place in a ruin. No language suffices. Continue reading
At some point, my congregation’s Torah was pieced together from remnants of many Torahs whose several parts date back as far as the late 1800’s. The people who heard this Torah read all over Europe were decimated by the Final Solution. Few of them survived the Shoah.
Somehow, parts of their Torah did.
Leaves are already beginning to fall outside my office window – even before they have turned. They fall because we have had another dry summer, another series of parched months.
They are dying before their time. Continue reading