atonement review

You don't say "happy Yom Kippur!" (well, unless you're newly-outed atheist congressman Pete Stark, on NPR) but it was a sweet and poignant day for me. Funny to write a services review, but it means a lot to me that this holiday was a real moment of connecting, with my community and with the most high.

It was an easy fast in terms of hunger, but a deep one; my body was aching with muscle tension and fatigue and yet I didn't have trouble staying in prayer and open to the work. There was incredible turnout to begin with, absolutely packed for Kol Nidre and ~120 during the torah service. Maybe 80 for Neilah (closing prayers). Rabbi Ezra was very present and brave, calling on us to wrestle with our objections and doubts, honestly expressing his own failures and despair. He brought us to the possibility of real repentance and yearning.

The community generated palpable energy together. Michael was drumming all day. By the end of services I ended up in a big clump of serious loud spirited davveners and though my back was really aching I could feel myself buoyed on their voices and strength. Mitch spoke about not liking services, Emma spoke about loving services, and I loved knowing that our community embraces and transcends these important debates.

And, finally: despite my fears that the below speech was vague, trite, and whiny, it seems to have hit a nerve. People loved it. Or, as one said, I didn't like hearing it, but I knew I had to. I was thanked. I feel good. I did something, however small, for the little synagogue that could. Tired.

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