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עשה תורתך קבע – אמור מעט ועשה הרבה

Jerusalem the Personal – Guest Post from Carol

Posted by rabbiart on November 11, 2008

jerusalem-moshe-and-carolIn previous visits to Jerusalem, we have focused on the sites – historical and religious. So far we haven’t left the hotel, but our visit has been deeply touching because of people.

I spent five years as the research coordinator for the Hungarian Special Interest Group, whose members are interested in Hungarian Jewish genealogy. As the research coordinator, I was responsible for the creation of the JewishGen All Hungary Database, which involved managing transcription projects with team leaders and members from all over the world. An Israeli gentleman named Moshe provided database technical support. While I corresponded with Moshe for years, we had never met. Last night he came to our hotel, and we finally were face to face after all these years. Art was able to connect with him immediately (Moshe worked at AMD as did Art). The three of us had a wonderful conversation (fortunately in English).

Another part of our life has been the support of Israeli college students originally from Ethiopia through an organization called the North American Conference on Ethiopian Jewry (NACOEJ – Our current student, Lea Ashageru, and the Director of the Adopt A Student Program, Yehuditart-lea-agadeshu-carol2, came to our hotel this morning. Ashageru is absolutely lovely. She just completed her nursing course and is newly employed as a geriatrics nurse at Shaarey Tezedek, a hospital in Jerusalem. She is the oldest of a family of seven children. Her parents left for Israel through Sudan, but she was born on the way, so they turned back. After another unsuccessful try, she and her family were able to come to Israel as part of Operation Moses. By the end of our visit, we truly felt the bonds between our two familes.

In addition to Ashageru, Yehudit traced three other students whom we supported since the mid-90’s. One became a relatively well known Israeli actor. Another became a successful lawyer, who heads his own practice. The third, Yaacov, is a nurse with a clinic in Haifa, and while we did not meet him, we were able to speak to him on the phone. We still have letters from them after all these years, and it is such a joy to learn about their lives beyond school.  Kol Yisrael areivim zeh bazeh.


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