Sunday, June 21, 2009

Catholic Funeral Mass and Kabbalat Shabbat at the Beach....A Full Day!

Shabbat Hamalka prepares her waves swell, storms depart, and our hearts open to the salt, the joy and the sand......

Given an 8:10 pm candle lighting time....our synagogue arranged to have our gathering at the beach. We aren't that far and we could have services and get back before the actual I guess it was actually a pre Shabbat, but it was glorious!

It has been raining I think for weeks.... this was the only day with sun!

This was a very welcomed and needed experience for me. Earlier in the day I was confronted with one of those classic convert dilemmas. A Catholic funeral. I had known about it for a number of days. Earlier in the week I was informed about the death of the husband of a woman I have known. This person was very kind to me throughout some very difficult and dark times at the end of my first marriage. I would be hard pressed to call her a good friend, but in that time, in that place she was exceedingly kind. Now her husband is dead, unexpectedly, and they are only having a full wake, no gathering etc. After much thought,meditation and I guess even prayer, I decided to go. To say I felt uncomfortable doesn't describe the odd emotions. I felt awkward...I sat in the back, didn't participate in prayers or songs,and didn't kneel . When it felt most difficult I recited the Shama to myself. It was like a time travel dream. I was there but I was different. I am Jewish and felt it in every fiber of my being. I am glad I went to show my was the kind thing to do...and it was another opportunity to experience my feeling totally Jewish.

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Dunking Rachael

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