by Rachel Lefkowitz, Synagogue Administrator
Two months ago, my biggest concern was about bringing food for onegs on plates rather than in containers. Well, the world certainly has changed since then.
I am grateful to everyone at Bet Ha’am who has stepped up, despite the anxiety and stress we all are feeling, to help keep our community vital. People who can shop are helping those who cannot. People who cannot shop are making phone calls to people who are isolated. People who are isolated are joining families at virtual services. People who come to virtual services are thinking about offering virtual classes and discussion groups. We are a place of great imagination and generosity.
I have been thinking about that generosity. If you offer to shop for someone or call them, or if you make a donation to Bet Ha’am (read more about that here), it is easy to see how you are supporting our community. It is harder to see how, if you say that you need something, you are also giving a gift to our community. It is not easy to ask help; as one congregant wrote, she’s never had to ask for help before. But reaching out for support is a kind of generosity itself, as it gives the people who would like to help something to do.
Hannah Herbold, a staff member who has been making check-in calls, wrote to me recently, “The genuine heart of the community really resonates with people who are so glad to be connected and thought of.” By making connections in all kinds of ways, we create the community that supports us all in this unprecedented time.