Posted on June 1, 2014
On Friday, May 9, we celebrated my ten years at Temple Beth David. It was quite a night. I didn’t know what to expect before this day arrived. When I came into the social hall, it was beautifully decorated and there were around 150 people in attendance. We had an elegant Shabbat dinner with excellent food. As we were winding down with our meal, Cantor Linder, Jackie Wiggins, Florence Sudakow, Lynne Horn, Sharon D. Matalon, and Elliot Fein spoke. Then we watched a video dedicated to my ten years. I was shocked and surprised that my father flew out from Buffalo, N.Y. The poor guy, he was just here for Passover. As I quickly glanced at the tribute book, I saw pictures of my rabbi, from my childhood, that I had only just learned had passed away. It was a bit emotional for me. On the lighter side, I found it both flattering and funny, that Friday was declared by Westminster as “Rabbi Nancy Rita Myers Day.” The worship service was superb with the voices of our choir and live music. Dr. Aaron Kern, our president, did a great job speaking and my dad, also to my surprise, spoke beautifully as well.
First of all, thank you to Garry Plotkin for overseeing this wonderful evening. His attention to detail always leads to exceptional events. Steve Harris worked many hours on the tribute book that is skillfully put together. I was amazed by the professional quality of Robin Harrison’s video about me and his interviews of members of our synagogue. Lynne Horn did such a marvelous job with decorations and Keri Gee Semmelman helped with so many nice touches to the evening.
I am especially grateful to all of you whether you were able to come that night or not. Firstly, thank you for the lovely words in the tribute book, your emails to me, and good wishes. Thank you to the preschool for putting together a photo book. Our religious school did a poster board and pillow with comments of our students. The 4 and 5th grade class, under Heli Shmilovich, created a huge cardboard log cabin replica of our synagogue with pictures of congregants and me inside it.
I feel so blessed to be part of a loving, connected community. I want you to know that I am grateful to be your rabbi and I am thankful for the outpouring of love I have experienced.
Hillel in Pirkei Avot, chapters of our fathers, said, “Al Tifros min hatzibur,” “Do not separate yourself from the community.” Well if I were to put Hillel’s words in the affirmative, it would be, “Be part of the community.” I feel not only part of our synagogue; I feel part of an intergenerational family. Thank you again.