Dvar Israel: Shabbat, May 27, 2017

SOME FINAL THOUGHTS ON A YEAR WELL SPENT IN TORONTO

"Those who have a why to live can bear with almost any how.” - Viktor Frankl

This is the quote I opened with in my very first Dvar and now 9 months later I’m standing here ready to deliver my last Dvar Israel. I remember the first time I spoke from the Bima, I remember my sweaty palms, shaking legs, trembling voice, and my eyes filling with tears when everyone started to sing Hatikvah - התקווה together. It didn’t occur to me that a congregation so far away from Israel will dedicate their time to talk, hear, ask and honor Israel.

I started this year with a big ‘why’. I wanted to share my Israel with you, not the one we see on the news or read about in newspapers. I wanted to share with you the Israel that I grow in, an amazing and complicated place in the center of the Middle East. I believe I shared my ‘why’ with you in this past year with a different Dvar Israel every Shabbat, each one a new tiny piece of the bigger puzzle. Shir and I talked with you about making the impossible possible- winning in the Paralympics, about water in Israel and desalination, about our holidays in Israel: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Hanukkah, Pesah and more. We spoke about Yitzhak Rabin and democracy in Israel, about the proud community, about the terrible arsons, about Arabic and Hebrew, about what it means to be Israeli, about the complicated feelings we are feeling during Yom HaAtzmaut and Yom HaZikaron For the Soldiers of Israel and For the Vicitims of Terror while we were so far away from home for the very first time. We spoke about Israeli inventions like Mobileye, and many more important topics.

Each one of these Divrai Israel when put together after the year has passed we hope gave you the picture of my and Shir’s Israel. We hope that you learned something new or even something that made you even more proud of Israel. But more than that, I want to thank you. I love learning and gaining new experiences and this year I learned so much. I've learned about Jewish life in the Diaspora and its importance to Israel, I’ve seen and experienced different kinds of Judaism - Reform, Conservative, and Egalitarian. I can't wait to be back home in Israel and to share with my friends and family all of my new knowledge. To share with my best-friends who are serving in the army right at this moment that every Shabbat, people, so far away far them are praying for their safety. So, thank you for listening every Shabbat and Todah Rabbah for having me here!

Shabbat Shalom !!