The prompt brought to mind two moments in particular that I found particularly meaningful for our Chicago Moishe community.
The first moment was at a recent Shabbat dinner. A girl, Rebecca, who had come to one program arrived. Later, two of our regulars, Karin and Brendan, arrived. They all got to talking and while playing Jewish geography, they slowly came to realize that Rebecca was about to move in as a subletter in Karin and Brendan's apartment. They had not yet met. We were thrilled at this connection. Moishe House Chicago is coming to be a place where people with similar values come together. On a side note, Karin and Brendan moved away at the beginning of June. Moishe House played a very important role in their time here in Chicago. They said it was the first community of which they really felt a part and they always looked forward to our programs, especially our Shabbat dinners. We are super sad to see them leave.
The second experience that comes to mind is the program we planned with some of our community members for Shavuot. I (Hannah) am trying to explore Judaism and its traditions. I've never celebrated Shavuot, but I wanted to do it this year and I trusted there would be others out there looking for a similar experience. So I tapped some people that I thought would contribute well to program development and they were excited to help plan. We had a very successful event. 30 people attended, 8-10 of them were new too! I was thrilled to see that there is an appetite for more Jewish-learning oriented programs. Additionally, a handful of people that attended are not Jewish. It's important to us, at MH Chicago, that we develop a diverse and open community. So we were happy that a program celebrating a holy day still attracted our community members that are not Jewish. Finally, it was great to see the enthusiasm of the planning crew. They were grateful to have been asked to participate in that regard, and we were grateful for all the assistance they provided.
May there be many more meaningful moments.
Over and out.