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“Read a Chapter Every Night” - My Grandmother’s Gift

Weekly Recap Video of Below the Bible Belt

In 1950, an enthusiastic and religions Zionist in her early 20’s, my mother Joan moved from London, her hometown, to  the young State of Israel.

One of her few possessions was a slim volume of the Psalms, with an inscription from her mother, Celine:

“Read a chapter every night, it will heighten your joys, and will lessen your sorrows. May you always read a chapter with joy.” 

47 years later, when I ventured in the opposer direction - from Israel to New York, my mother handed me her precious psalter, and added her own moving inscription, quoting one of the psalms: “ may God protect your comings and goings, forever.”

This week, as we begin our journey with the 150 chapters of the psalms, I’m moved to these matriarchal blessings with you all. 

At 94, going strong, even in the middle of these difficult and violent days, my mother is determined to keep her mother’s legacy, and persist with our daily diligence- psalm by psalm.. 

I just got back from another visit with my mother, framily and friends - and lent her back her mother’s Psalter..may it be that I’ll be worthy of getting it back when we’re done, in November. As she likes to say - god willing.. 

May we read these PSLAMS with joy, and find within them consolation, strength and meaning. 

Upon this continued journey - let us be blessed as we enter and exit, begin this journey and open our heart to these poems that have held so many of ancestors through highs and lows. 

Hope and healing. 

Shabbat Shalom.