Having just participated in the first Atlanta area URJ Mitzvah Day, I have a renewed appreciation for the many mitzvot which occur around the Kehillah. It is said that charity begins in the home, well, we have some unsung heroes who keep things moving around the Kehillah. When you see someone going an extra mile around the Kehillah, please take a moment and say thanks. Then we take the idea outside the Kehillah. It has been a particular source of pride that we participate in Drake House. It is a large undertaking for such a small congregation.
Those efforts make a big difference and send a message to our students. That message must be coming in loud and clear. The enthusiasm with which our students respond when challenged with finding a mitzvah project as part of preparing to become a bar or bat mitzvah is heart filling to be sure. From a simple collection to those projects which involve many hours of time and effort to support a cause, these mitzvot all serve to make life a little better for another person.
It may be impossible to perfect the world, but that does not preclude us from trying. I hope that you will respond as our young people reach out for support for causes near and dear to their hearts. I hope you will find satisfaction in reaching out to help others. In your family, in your neighborhood, around the Kehillah, in your community and in the world – I hope you will feel the connection to others as we work together to repair the world.
I look forward to working together again next year as a Reform Jewish community to make things a little better in the greater Atlanta community. It will be the start of a wonderful way for us to come together and, in the words of one of my favorite Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young songs, “teach your children well”…
Now, I turn the remainder of my column over to Audrey Hirshberg, one of our 6th grade students, as she writes to you about the importance of fighting hunger.
Did you know that the total cost of hunger to the United States is said to be about $90 billion a year? Would you be surprised to know that it would only cost about $10 billion to $12 billion a year to virtually end hunger in our nation? We can teach people skills needed to get better jobs to earn the money to buy their own food, instead of lining up at shelters to receive food daily. Recent studies have shown that not having enough food to sustain a healthy life is a reality for 1 in 6 Americans, including seniors and children. Contrary to popular belief, hunger is not just an issue for people who struggle with poverty and homelessness. You can help heal the world and feed the hungry by coming to the Kehillat Chaim Purim Carnival on Sunday, March 11th and stopping by our bake sale in the Social Hall. You can purchase bite-sized desserts at our 2nd annual sale with all proceeds going to stop hunger in our community with the help of North Fulton Community Charities. The sixth grade class has already started preparing desserts for this event, so come on March 11th to feed the hungry.