Sunday, September 12, 2010
Rabbi Wood....You ROCK!!!
Today was the first day of Sunday School at The Reform Temple of Forest Hills (where I work)! It seems like EVERYONE else is starting today too. And it's a tough time of year. We've just celebrated Rosh Hashanah, Rosh Hashanah II, Shabbat Shuvah, and now we have Sunday School. Five days in a row!!! The way the holidays fell this year, it's possible that you've been at synagogue every single day this week since Wednesday evening!!!! And it can get a little exhausting, even for us professionals.
But, there is nothing like the start of a new Sunday School year. The kids have such great energy, the synagogue is buzzing with life, there is laughter and music in the air - it's just so uplifting. And after a long week, it really is refreshing and revitalizing. I saw parents tentatively drop their kids off at the classrooms. I saw kids walk into their classrooms even more tentatively. And at the end of the day I saw them embrace as they reunited, recounting what had been learned that day. I saw kids walking out with art projects in their hands and smiles on their faces. It was beautiful.
As I was walking out of the building, I stopped to chat with our amazing group of teens who were done for the day (working as aides in the classrooms) and chit-chatted with them for a few moments. Then one of them exclaimed, "Rabbi Wood - you rock! I love you"
I was a little taken aback. But then, I was happy she said this - not for myself, but for her. How wonderful, to have Jewish role models that you can look up to, talk to, and even feel comfortable enough to say things like that to, after having only known a short period of time. How great to have a rabbi that you feel you can talk to after a long day, and who can be there for you in a way that is different from your parents or friends. I hope I can always provide a sense of Jewish positivity in these kids (and all kids) lives for years to come. I care less about the fact that I "rock" and more about the fact that she wanted to express her love and gratitude to me for my role in her life.
It was a really special day. And it gave yet another undeniable reason why I feel so honored to be doing the work that I do, day in and day out, for the Jewish people.
Great start to 5771. How's your year going so far???