In our final Land Beyond Torah class of the year, we completed the book of Second Samuel. As is customary upon the completion of a sacred text, our class of about 30 rose to recite Kaddish d’Rabbanan, the “Rabbi’s Kaddish.”
This Kaddish – in Aramaic, like all Kaddishes– beseeches G-d to bestow blessings upon teachers of Torah and upon their students. “Al rabbanan,” we intone, “v’al talmideihon.” For our rabbis and for their students.
I am grateful to my students, my friends in The Land Beyond Torah. I am, in fact, blessed by them, for I am not only their teacher; I am also their student. We are fellow learners; we learn from the insights and wisdom of each other.
This is emblematic of our EHNTJC; we thrive and succeed not by following pronouncements of voices from on high. We succeed rather through our partnerships, each one contributing wisdom, expertise, and effort.
Yes, we possess different roles. My responsibilities as rabbi are not the same as the cantor’s, the president’s, or as a committee chair’s. But just as the various voices within my classes create a harmony of learning, so too do the myriad contributions of each of us create a chorus that shapes who we are and that makes us successful, now and into the future.
May G-d prosper our work. And may we continue to work together toward the common goal of making our kehillah kedusha– our holy community – a little holier, a little stronger.
Rabbi Jeffrey Weill