Words of the Week: Allison Darcy

“My calendar this week is more full than it could be at any physical shul I know of, even if other factors didn’t keep me home. There is Torah study, challah baking class, rabbi-led meditation, readings by Jewish authors. There are more options for Shabbat services or daily minyans — like the one being offered every weekday by MyJewishLearning — than I could attend in a year. Sure, livestreaming services have existed for a while now. But every time I tried one before, it meant watching from a camera placed on a balcony or in an aisle, the backs of people’s heads reminding me I was only an observer of someone else’s community. Now I can see the rabbi’s eyes. I can chat with everyone there. I may be welcomed by name.

It’s not that this isn’t a terrifying time. It is. But isolation has given me access to exactly what I need to get through the panic: connection. Ritual. A community that feels ancestral and enduring. Suddenly I have the adult Jewish life I once dreamed of and had nearly given up on.”

Source: Allison Darcy, “Before the Coronavirus, I Hadn’t Gone to Synagogue in Years. Now, I’m More Jewishly Connected than Ever” (JTA)