A Sense of Belonging by Rhonda Gellerman

Every year since the Mishpacha program’s inception and until my son entered 7th grade, I stood at (Or Ami office manager) Susie Stark’s desk with forms in hand by 10 am on the first day that Mishpacha registration opens to secure our place for the next Mishpacha school year. And throughout the year, I am trying so hard not to come in late as I don't want us to miss out on the beginning of the session which sets the tone for the rest of the morning.

Once we’re all settled in, I love the time that being at Mishpacha gives my son Josh and me together. I see so much growth in him this year. I let him take the lead, giving him the opportunity to share his opinion on the sessions topic with me. He is so insightful, so aware of his thoughts, his journey to his sense of what being Jewish is, and for this year’s topic, what God is for him.

And then, I always enjoy learning with the Rabbis, our Mishpacha Coordinators and the many wonderful faculty members that work so hard to make the lessons educational and family friendly.

There is a sense of belonging to our Or Ami community that is reinforced for us by every program that we are involved with. And even though my husband Doug’s commitment to our synagogue’s Ten Plagues softball team often kept him from joining us at Mishpacha, thanks to the "Carpool Convo" (questions to discuss on the car ride home), Josh and I bring our Mishpacha lesson to the dinner table every Sunday evening!