Happy Juneteenth and our diverse Jewish family

Thursday morning I got up early for a 7am virtual bat mitzvah. Many years ago a young woman went through some of my classes and decided to convert. I connected her to a rabbi. She became a Jew. In a few years she met a man and fell in love. He wasn’t Jewish so we talked about interfaith topics. They married and had a daughter. This new mother participated in a Jewish mom’s group I led. We’ve stayed in touch. This morning her daughter became bat mitzvah.

This is my life and I love it. I am blessed to see individuals grow, to have children, to live Jewish lives. I am particularly blessed to be included in their simchas (celebrations).

The young lady who became bat mitzvahed has a black mother and a Mexican father. Other than her drash, my favorite part was her paternal grandmother bursting with joy, “Mazel tov, niquita!” (Congratulations little girl).  This thirteen year old is growing up in a world that has had little love for a black, Mexican, Jewish person. I am redoubling my efforts to make this a country that loves her and her family, or at the very least, gives her justice and peace.

May we all be blessed with justice and peace.

What do YOU need to bring your whole self to the racial justice movement? I needed to learn more. I’ve been reading everything I can get my hands on – online because I’m social distancing. AND watching lots of videos. Would it be helpful to you if I shared some of these?

Happy Juneteenth!