Read through SAJ's recent media highlights as we celebrate our 100th year anniversary.
2. Reflection by Abraham Clott, SAJ 100 Years Co-Chair
|Abe Clott has been an active member since joining SAJ in 1994. This is the second installment of our Reflection Series for SAJ 100 Years. If you would like to contribute to this series, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Some Early Personal SAJ Memories
By Abe Clott
|My first visit, Fall 1994: I arrive at 9:25 for the 9:30 Shabbat morning service. I see only two people and thought I had come to the wrong place. Jack Levy explains he is the Ritual Committee Chair and always arrives by 9:30. Cantor Kornreich explains he is the Cantor. Rabbi Feld joins us and the service began.
Whatever it was that Rabbi Feld discussed – I think it was circumcision – was so stimulating that I found myself thinking about it through the week and had to come back the next week to hear what he had to say next.
By three Shabbatot in a row I was hooked. The discussion was always wild. The best part was whenever this amazingly beautiful woman with hair down to her waist spoke unpredictably but always brilliantly. Dolores Pellman.
Built up my courage to go to kiddush on my second visit, I think. Somebody came up and asked why anyone would come to The SAJ? Met David Ripps, Rivka Rudner, and Ted Merwin that first day. We have lost David and Rivka. Ted and I are still fast friends.
When I joined, Paula Wexler (who called up and identified herself as “the lady with the hat”) had me over for Shabbat dinner with the Kornreichs, Sarae Crane, and the Pellmans. Best Shabbat dinner ever.
A few years later, after my first Yom Kiippur Appeal as Chair, my mother said for the only time ever, “This is the one time I will let myself say that I really wish Bill (my father) were here for this.”
I have grown and changed. The SAJ has grown and changed. Nobody mentioned above is part of our present SAJ world. But SAJ-Judaism That Stands for All is as vibrant, exciting, and meaningful as ever.