Tonight Congregation Beth Israel will be in our new synagogue! We will dance our Torahs in and our first services will be for Shavout. Shavuot is one of my favorite festivals because it has such special meaning for me. I've chronicled my journey into rejoining my tribe.
The Megillah of Ruth will be read. Like her, I and thousands of others have said, "Your people will be my people, and your G-d my G-d". She, I, and thousands of others have stood at Sinai and said "We will do and we will obey".
It has been at times, a struggle for our congregation. Since Hurricane Katrina, some of families have had to move away because they lost jobs, homes, or both. Through it all, we have remained a strong community committed to supporting one another and celebrating bar mitzvahs, bat mitzvahs, and the festivals together . We have persevered. We now will celebrate as a community the completion of our new home.
Chazak, Chazak, V'nitchazeik !!!
I know these are the words said at the completion of reading each of the Torah. It seems appropriate to say them today.