84: Temple

25 Jan

Last night I went with our church confirmands to Sabbat services at a local Jewish temple. I remember going when I was in confirmation classes. It made a deep impression on me then and it had the same effect on me last night. However, the middle schoolers we took last night were far more well behaved than I remember my youth group being. I remember my then best friend making fun of the songs and movements that happened during the service instead of asking questions to understand. The temple we went to as youth was in Dallas and very conservation, traditional and grand. This temple was very modern, relaxed and welcoming. The cantor had the most beautiful voice and I thought the service was so beautiful, reflective, prayerful and peaceful that I could spend every Friday night just like this. The people were so kind and the message, songs and prayers were so centering that I felt this would be a wonderful way to end a hectic work week.

 

After the service, the Rabbi, invited the students up to the alter, unlocked the tabernacle and unrolled the Torah. He explained that every temple across the world’s Torah would be in the same place because they follow a cycle where they tell the story. Last night’s part of the Torah was when Moses receives the Ten Commandants. He talked to the kids about how the Torah is made, the special trained people who script the Hebrew in the Torah, how Torah’s are purchased or commissioned, the tools they use to read from the Torah and store the Torah and why. Then there was snacks.

Before temple, my confirmand and I went to the Olive Garden for dinner. I just love the Olive Garden. I ate salad until I just about busted open. The two of us ate and ate and ate and discussed how difficult middle school is to navigate. She certainly has a strong head on her  shoulders. We then got in a very intense conversation about autism. Her sister is autistic and she is very interested in studying genetics related to autism.

While, I missed my family, it was a really great night!

 

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