In my tradition, Judaism, I was taught that tragedy is just that “tragedy” until it brings us around to serve humanity with new insight and strength. It didn’t take 9/11 to teach me that healing those in dire straits is one of our greatest peacemaking efforts, but it sure woke me up. Two weeks after the destruction of that day, I flew to Manhattan to lead a memorial service for a friend who dedicated his life to healing children living in poverty. He was a pediatric nephrologist and witnessed the aftermath of dropping the atom bomb. Upon his return home from Japan, he started the Children’s Aid Society’s mobile clinic in NYC. It was then, after his memorial service, that I began my move back to my first passion, medicine. I was premed as an undergrad 30 years ago and through a well worn path became a lawyer, rabbi and now an RN.
Finding COHI through its founder, Sera Bonds, whose wedding I presided over, was as close to a miracle as I have ever come. The path to working toward healing and peace continued. Now, I get to do my work as an RN in a part of the world that stirs my soul. A region I visited and lived as a student and rabbi. Now, I go back with the skills of a new nurse.
Working to help make the entry of a new life in a troubled part of the world a little safer is one way I can help. My hope is to enable these families to speak kindly of Americans, of men, and this Jew, as they raise the next generation in health.
My part is just a small part. Once born, we all need to work to make the world a place where a new human being can grow up without threat of war, famine or disease. I only hope that my small piece will be a spark that ignites others to find a place to activate their passions toward healing and peace.