Rebbetzin Dr. Adina Shmidman
Several summers ago, our family stopped in London for fifteen hours on our way to Israel. It was a scheduled lay-over, an opportunity to visit a European city for the day. In anticipation of the visit, I spent hours meeting with a British friend, poring over maps and googling to assure that every minute would be accounted for, every move laid out. Upon our arrival in London, our time was used wisely and we saw more than one could have anticipated considering the length of the visit.
When Elul arrived that year, I realized that the trip had afforded me more than a stamp on my passport and a glimpse at the Crown Jewels. The lesson learned was powerful – you can’t just show up to London if you want the time to be meaningful. The preparation, anticipation, effort and energy was necessary to create a memorable experience. As we enter the Yamim Noraim, we invest time and energy reflecting on our year, analyzing our accomplishments and exploring our future goals. This investment is necessary if we expect to experience meaning. We can’t just show up.
The Women’s Initiative has invested time and energy to create experiences and opportunities of Torah learning and personal growth throughout the year and particularly before the Yamim Noraim. The Weekend of Inspiration, in partnership with Torah NY, was an opportunity to host Rabbanit Shani Taragin and Mrs. Dina Schoonmaker as scholars in residence both at synagogues and schools on Shabbat and Selichot night. The Rosh Chodesh Elul and Tishrei presentations are an opportunity to hear messages of growth and repentance from Mrs. Elisheva Kaminetsky and Rebbetzen Emma Taylor. Archived presentations are available at ou.org/women. Through Torah, leadership and community engagement, we aim to make your journey worth your while.