In the last 24 hours I have heard from many of you expressing your grief over the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, a true beacon of justice in our country. I share your grief and the determination to carry on the work she did so tirelessly her entire life.
Yesterday was Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year. Ginsberg’s great friend, NPR reporter Nina Totenberg, had this to say about her death:
“A Jewish teaching says those who die just before the Jewish New Year are the ones God has held back until the last moment because they were needed most and were the most righteous. And so it was that RBG died as the sun was setting last night, marking the beginning of Rosh Hashanah.”
We will remember Justice Ginsberg in our service tomorrow. We had already planned for tomorrow’s worship to be a remembrance of the 200,000 people in this country who have died from the coronavirus. We have special prayers and music for the day, including violinist Kerren Berz. Please join us.
The service sheet for tomorrow is attached.
On Rosh Hashanah it is written, on Yom Kippur it is sealed. That this year people will live and die, some more gently than others and nothing lives forever. But amidst overwhelming forces of nature and humankind, we still write our own Book of Life, and our actions are the words in it, and the stages in our lives are the chapters, and nothing goes unrecorded, ever. Every deed counts, Everything we do matters. And we never know what act or word Will leave an impression or tip the scale. If not now, then when? For the things we can change, there is a t'shuvah, realignment. For the things we cannot change, there is t'filab, prayer. For the help we can give, there is tzedakab, justice. Together, let us write a beautiful Book of Life for the Holy One to read. Rabbi Joseph P. Meszler