January 28th, 2013

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Very Briefly On Kalaiv's Bar Mitzvah

This weekend was the "bar mitzvah" for my nephew Kalaiv. I put that in quotes because Kalaiv is sufficiently autistic that he is not considered "bar das" (or, for you folks who speak real Hebrew rather than Ashkenazi pronunciation, bar da'at). It was a very exhausting affair, since my brother and Sheri had a lot of DIY in the celebration and I was part of the Y.

It was very emotionally moving and beautiful that so many people in our community and our family came to celebrate Kalaiv's accomplishments. Rabbi Walter, the Rabbi for our synagogue, spoke eloquently about how on Shabbas Shira (the "Sabbath of Song" on which we read he song of the splitting of the Red Sea) we are reminded of Kalaiv's unique song, that he has taught us how to listen to so that we can sing with him. My brother spoke about how Kalaiv is, for him, the proof of God and Torah in how he has seen Kalaiv and our community grow with each other.

I spoke at Seudat Shlishit -- the Sabbath afternoon meal. to summarize:
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