Replica of the Western Wall, Jerusalem with paper prayers at Congregation Beth Israel, Scottsdale

After sharing my story on a Zoom call with a group in Texas, during question time I was asked, “Why haven’t you moved to Israel?” 

In the immediacy of that public moment, on the big screen, when inner reactions  are on full display I skirted around the loaded question. 

Since then digging deeper, embracing the question, I have asked myself…

Where do I belong?

Surely a quest pursued by many of us, not only  Jews. The search for acceptance,  inclusion, relationship, loyalty, kinship, rapport, attachment is universal.

Uprooting, leaving, loss, change is the common story of my ancestors.

Abraham followed the call of God to leave his home in Ur of the Chaldeans, the Sumerian capital, in his day, a center of architecture, trade and agriculture.

Archaeological digs confirm Ur was a sophisticated city, located in southern Iraq.

Ur | Sourced fromWikipedia

Ur | Sourced fromWikipedia

Abraham, not knowing his final destination, chose to leave his family and all that was familiar.

He was a stranger, an exile, living in tents, seeking a homeland, a better country, a city that had foundations whose designer and builder was God. 

Hebrews 11: 8 – 10 (paraphrase)

So where is home? 

Last Sunday George and I had challah, bagels, salmon and blintzes at Congregation Beth Israel in Paradise Valley.

The buffet

The German government funds Café Europa, a world wide monthly event for  Holocaust survivors to enjoy each others company and share stories. 

An oasis on my journey to the eternal city.

Group photo

Where is home for you on your journey?