I am excited to meet all of you over the next few months, but it might be helpful for you to learn a bit more about me. I was born and raised in Philadelphia (I’m a Phillies fan, but please don’t hold it against me), and I grew up in a Conservative Jewish household. Much of my childhood was spent in my parent’s deli, and some of my fondest memories are of Shabbat dinners at my grandparent’s house before we went to synagogue.
Like some of my generation, I began drifting from Judaism after my Bar Mitzvah and after my grandparents passed away. I attempted to reconnect several times throughout my adult life, but in many cases felt like I was not Jewish enough and so I stopped. It was not until I joined the Alliance’s mission to Israel a few years ago that I truly reconnected with my Jewish identity, and that connection has only grown stronger in the years since.
I share this story because I believe the Alliance must be a place where all members of the Jewish community feel welcome. We must be more inclusive, and if you haven’t engaged with us in a while, please consider reconnecting!
In the coming weeks and months, I’ll be holding a series of listening sessions to hear from you about where you believe the Rhode Island Jewish community should be going and what role the Alliance can play in building that community. I hope you will join us and share your ideas.
Until then, thank you again for the warm welcome, and Shabbat Shalom!