|Camp Newman October 2017|
I know that buildings do not make a place but the people do; I also know that a camp, any camp buildings also have memories and emotions attached to them. I know that the camp leaders of Newman are meeting and working now to think about next summer. This is not easy as they have not been let back into their camp as it is still smoldering. It is still not safe to go there.
|Tzofim Beit T'filah, where I met my son in law|
When I pray in any of our Beitei T'filah I love the feeling that other campers have prayed in this same space. It warms my heart to see madrichim singing and leading t'filot and remembering they were once campers in this same space. In fact I met my son in law in one of these Beit T'filah at camp and that memory is one of my favorites.
I have spent hours and hours in our Beitei T'filah with family, friends and colleagues and when I was watching the news of Newman this week I was crying. I know I was thinking about our camp too.
|Kallah Beit T'filah|
I have been haunted also by what I would have chosen from my own house if I had to leave because of fire. I thought about pictures, computer, and some valuables. In the middle of the night I woke up in a panic thinking that I would also have to take our passports and other important papers we have at the house. I had never thought of that before.
I know Newman was able to get out their Torah scrolls and all of their staff is safe and for that everyone is profoundly thankful. I know that the Jewish community will be supportive and generous for Camp Newman and if it so moves you here is the link to their fundraising to rebuild their camp and I would be remiss if I did not give the link to OSRUI as well. I have a nice bet going this week with my west coast colleagues over the Cubs-Dodgers Playoffs. I did pledge twice the amount to Newman if you were wondering and I will be sending a donation WHEN the Cubs win!