Honoring my Mother's Memory and Legacy
My mom never seemed to sit still for very long. She worked full time caring for students at Schechter for over two decades, and then devoted her evenings and weekends to nursing ill neighbors, visiting elderly members of our synagogue, tutoring adult b'nei-mitzvah students, teaching adult education classes, attending Synagogue Council meetings, and much more. She even kept a kippah in every one of her handbags just in case she was called upon to attend a shiva minyan while she was out running errands. Her death was a wrenching loss not only to the people who knew and loved her, but to the Boston Jewish community that she served with such energy and enthusiasm. She did so much; how could we possibly manage without her?
The answer is in each of us. If we continue her work in the Jewish community: if we care for the sick and the elderly, if we teach, if we participate in communal organizations, then we can begin to fill in the void she left behind. The Synagogue Council has taken an exciting step in this direction through its new initiative that cultivates women's mentorship and encourages young leadership. Attaining leadership positions in the Jewish community can still be challenging for women, who often work full time while still being the primary caregiver for young children and aging parents, who have to fight against the instinct to be submissive and apologetic, and who struggle to assert themselves without being branded as 'shrill' or 'bossy.' It can also be difficult for young adults who are often intimidated by more experienced members of the community, who may be hesitant to join a synagogue, and who are still trying to figure out their identities as Jews. By making leadership more accessible to these groups through this new initiative, the Synagogue Council will strengthen our community by raising up the next generation of Jewish leaders.
Please join us on June 3rd as we pay tribute to my mother by introducing this new initiative. Continuing the the Jewish communal work she cherished is a powerful way of honoring her memory.