I began working for a synagogue in November of 2010. I’m going to keep the details of this job a little hazy, out of respect for the privacy of the institution and individuals involved. That being said, there are some things that you’ll want to know about me if you are interested in this blog. I’m a she. I’m Jewish. I was raised in a Reform synagogue. I live in the South. I work for a synagogue as a lay-person. In my professional capacity, I receive a lot of phone calls every day. If my office walls could talk, most of their stories would be about these phone calls. The phone calls are a good part of why I am here, starting this blog.
These phone calls have made me laugh. They’ve broken my heart. They’ve made me scream in frustration. They’ve made me go search the synagogue kitchen for chocolate. Sometimes they’ve made me curse the very G-d that brought us all into community in the first place. They’ve made me question my place in the universe. At times, they’ve challenged me, pushed me to my limits, and shut me down completely. Others times, they’ve inspired me to be more patient, more selfless, more generous, and a better Jew.
But if there’s one thing that I have taken away from my job at the synagogue, it’s that sometimes it’s really hard being a Jew in the South. There’s a lot more to be said about that and that’s the rest of why I am here, writing this blog.
So I ask you, does any of this sound familiar? Are you a Jew in the South? Do crazy people call your office and tell you their life story? Do they tell you that G-d came to them in a dream and told them to call you? Do they ask you questions that you don’t know how to answer? When people find out that you are Jewish, do they tell you their assumptions about Jews and Judaism that make you *facepalm*?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, I hope you’ll stick around, because I think we’ve got a lot to talk about!