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The power of us

09/19/2020 12:01:00 PM

Sep19

Rabbi Howard Cove


 

Most of the prayers in the Machzor (the High Holiday prayer book), are written in the plural: help us, save us, return us, forgive us, and so on.
During my adulthood, I have
had the opportunity to travel
to India, Mexico, to the islands
of Puerto Rico and Saint Thomas,
and I have been to many big cities
and small towns around the United
States. When I was able, I would seek out the Jewish Community in that location. From New Delhi, India to Evanston Illinois, and the many places in between, I have had a similar experience. After introducing myself to complete strangers, within a few minutes I felt a connection. We often would engage in a little Jewish geography. (Do you know so and so?). “Would you like to come to our house for dinner?” I would be asked. “Can I help you?...... Do you need directions to your next
destination?” “Take my number in case you need
anything.” All this from people who had been unknown to me just moments before. There
I was, in a new place, yet feeling that there was a
familiarity and level of comfort. It was like I was surrounded by people who
felt like family. I have felt an inexplicable bond with my fellow Jews,
whether working out at a JCC in St. Louis or having a Shabbat meal at a synagogue in Skokie Illinois. There is something special about having a connection and a community.
And when we pray, we do so in the plural. Because each one of us is part of a greater organism. Each of us, a living cell in a body that is over 3000 years old. We pray in the plural because we exist in them as they exist in us.
Wishing all a sweet and especially healthy New Year 5781
Staci and Rabbi Howard Cove

Fri, 23 October 2020