This evening is the yartzeit of a dear friend of mine. She passed away 7 yrs ago, died in a car accident. It was shocking and terribly sad for her family and close friends. I had known Susie since we were youngsters together in camp. We had been a jc counselors together when we were 18-19 yrs old. We had spent a most memorable summer together in Israel. I had spent Shabbos quite a number of times with Susie and her family and loved her dearly. And our families had summered together for close to 30 years.
Yesterday I decided that I could not, I would not, let her yartzeit go by without some sort of acknowledgement. I notified my friends and put a sign on the grocery that this evening, the 16th of Av, I’ll be hosting a gathering in Susie’s memory. We’ll keep it informal. We’ll sit in a circle and share memories. Perhaps we’ll recite a chapter of Tehillim/Psalms, or two. And then, we’ll sing.
Sing? Last week, in preparation for Tisha B’Av and trying to make sense of all that has been happening over the last couple of weeks, I read everything I could find, loads of relevant reading. I learnt that all the sorrow in the world, all the difficulties, all the challenges, stem from the same root cause; the destruction of the Bais Hamikdash. Rebuilding our beloved Yerushalayim and the holy Temple, would impact every aspect of our lives. And therefore we pray several times daily, ‘Uvneh Yerushalayim Ir hakodesh…..’
There are many beautiful melodies referring to the rebuilding of Yerushalayim. Music is the language of the soul. Our souls will sing in harmony this evening. Each song is a prayer. When these are sung with feeling and intent, they can reach the Heavenly realms.
May the soul of our beloved Chaya bas Reb Yisrael Hakohen be elevated. And may she enjoy a radiant Gan Eden. And may we all soon be reunited with our loved ones, with the coming of Moshiach Tzidkeinu.