As the day draws nearer and nearer to our departure from Chicago, I am faced almost on a daily basis with "the last of..." experience regarding SOME event or activity. Some examples: Yesterday afternoon, I finished writing my last speech to be given at KJBS. Usually, once I write and finish a speech, I look it over once or twice before I deliver it but I have not "practiced" a speech (with rare exceptions) for many years. However, THIS speech was different...this speech will be the last one from the pulpit and I did, indeed, practice it yesterday. Needless to say, it was NOT an easy task. And on Shabbat, June 27th, when I deliver this speech, it will be even more difficult. I invite anyone who wishes to be there, to join us for Tefilla Shabbat morning, June 27th beginning at 8:30am, as we will have one joint Minyan that day. I hope to see you there!
This Shabbat, I will help celebrate the last Bar Mitzva that I will officiate at in Chicago. I recall when I saw this young man's name (Zeke Gillman) on the Shul calendar a long time ago, I thought that his Bar Mitzva was SO far away and the last one at KJBS while I was rabbi. Well, here it is, this Shabbat...my last Bar Mitzva.
My youngest daughter, Eliana, who was honored as both the Hebrew AND English valedictorian this week, graduated Arie Crown. Eliana is my last daughter to finish at Arie Crown, where we have been parents for 16 years. It is hard to believe that we will not be parents in the school anymore (but it is NOT hard to believe that we will not be writing any more tuition checks there!). We are very pleased with the education that all three of our daughters received at the school and wish ACHDS continued Hatzlacha in the education of all of its students!
This Shabbat will also mark the last time I will say Birkat HaChodesh in Chicago. This bracha, that announces the upcoming New Month, will be for the month of Tammuz, a month that is not the "happiest" in the Jewish calendar. However, this year, at least, the month of Tammuz will mark the beginning of a new life for our family, as we land in Israel (IYH) on 15 Tammuz!
And finally, one last comment...MANY of you have been asking me about job prospects once I arrive in Israel. The SHORT answer is that I do not yet have a job lined up. The longer answer, which I will not go into depth with here, is that I am working on it quite strongly but most places really do not want to "hear about it" until your feet are firmly planted on the ground. So, if you want to "help," always feel free to daven that I find a job asap!
Ok, back to work...still plenty to do!
17 days and 59 minutes to go...TICK...TICK...TICK!