By Dena Herrin, RS President
Before I tell you about a profound moment that I had, let me give you some context. As some of you know, my connections to Judaism for most of my life were weak at best. I left Hebrew school, which I hated, at 10 years old and barely stepped in a synagogue for the next 25 years. I occasionally went with my parents for the High Holy Days, but really didn’t understand or engage in the service. The word and concept of God made me very uncomfortable, still does. Our Rosh Hashanah dinners, Yom Kippur breakfasts and Passover Seders were occasions I enjoyed as family gatherings, and to a much lesser extent, cultural events. For me, there really was no spirituality or deep religious context to these holidays. I joined Rodeph Shalom in an effort to find some Jewish connection for my children. We are an interfaith family and my Jewish foundations were simply too shallow to provide relevant content and meaning for my family. I share this background because the moment that I want to tell you about occurred in the sanctuary here, at Rodeph Shalom, at a time when my connections to Judaism and to the synagogue were very superficial.