By Deborah Bers: Hurricane Sandy is becoming a distant memory for some of us, although it is still very much at the forefront for those who are still without homes or have not completed repairs, resolved insurance settlements or recovered psychologically (or financially) from its effects. While all of us were, at the very least, inconvenienced by the storm, most of us were affected to varying degrees beyond that.
Thanksgiving is over, and we have already expressed our thanks for family, friends and good food, but most of us can also find reasons to be thankful in the aftermath of the storm, whatever the extent of our trouble. Seeing the devastation that was visited upon the residents of Staten Island, Long Island and New Jersey, it is easy to be thankful that our losses were minimal in comparison.
What we may also be thankful for, though, is the community of our fellow congregants, led by our clergy, who are always ready with offers of help, and who can organize at a moment’s notice to deliver whatever to whoever is in need. It is at times like this that we are truly appreciative of one of the most important functions of the Jewish community. Though we tend to draw closer to each other in times of need, we should be sure to remember to maintain those connections at other times as well. Contributing to the community by participating in classes, attending events and helping out with various synagogue functions serve to strengthen our community as much as does stepping up to help when synagogue members are in need. This month, for instance, the Hanukkah Hoopla provides a perfect opportunity for adults and children to come together as a community and celebrate. Come to the JCC on Saturday, December 15 from 6:30 to 10:30 to enjoy music and dancing, great food and festive drinks, and the company of fellow congregants.