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Oct 4, 2023, 5:43 AM
Sukkot: Lessons of Gratitude from a Flood
I have always regarded the Festival of Sukkot as “Z’man Simchatenu,” the season of our joy as mentioned in the Torah (Leviticus 23:40). Following on the heels of the solemn High Holidays, I have enjoyed this joyful holiday, even...
May 30, 2022, 10:12 PM
Lighting the Yahrzeit Candle for a Broken World
This week, I light two memorial candles: tonight is the first yahrzeit of my dear friend Shirley, who died last year on 1 Sivan. Tomorrow night, my memories will turn to my beloved father, who died on 2 Sivan,...
Jan 9, 2022, 1:41 AM
Tu b’Shevat: Planting Seeds of Hope
We’re now preparing to celebrate Tu b’Shevat, the 15th day of the Hebrew month of Shevat and Rosh Hashanah L’Ilanot or the New Year of the Trees; it’s a day when it’s become traditional to plant trees, both literally...
Jan 11, 2021, 12:37 AM
My Plea to U.S. Democracy: Please Don’t Forsake Us!
I vividly recall the first time I visited the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate in Boston. It was a few days after Senator John McCain died on August 25, 2018. Upon entering the lobby, what...
Dec 23, 2020, 5:27 PM
Embracing Holiday Lights during the Pandemic
It’s nearly a week since I lit the last Hanukkah candles. As I watched the glowing lights of the Hanukkiah flickering on the windowsill against the winter sky, I reflected on the holiday’s inspiring message of hope and resilience...
Nov 25, 2020, 5:58 PM
Gratitude for Connections from Afar during the Pandemic, Looking Ahead
This year, because of 2020 coronavirus safety guidelines, I will deeply miss spending time with family on Thanksgiving. Instead, like millions of other Americans, my husband and I will be not be connecting in person but celebrating the holiday...
Sep 15, 2020, 2:12 AM
Music for My Soul during the Global Pandemic
As I write this piece, it’s the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Elul, the period of introspection and self-reflection before the High Holidays. Like every other morning this month, I begin the day by tuning into my...
Jul 15, 2020, 6:02 AM
Hebrew poetry for healing and connection
How critical a tool poetry is to understanding the diverse voices of Israeli society; how wonderful the unexpected personal connection of online classes
Paula Jacobs is a Boston area writer. She has published in a variety of digital and print publications including Tablet Magazine, the Forward, and The Jerusalem Post.