Saw this article referenced on Editilla's ladder. What I wrote a while back about the local Jewish community's measures to boost its numbers here post-storm still applies - though I am glad to see the networking aspect of the Jewish Federation's program is going on. The thing that will ultimately keep these newcomers here, however, is what will bring this entire city back and help make it better than before, which is a variety of skilled jobs that are not heavily dependent on the tourist dollar.
Although I must say that the Jewish community here is different from most other places. There is a diversity within its ranks and an interdenominational cooperation that is not seen in many other places. The majority of the Jews here are Reform-affiliated, but there are also Conservative Jews, Modern Orthodox, Lubavitchers, and others - and they come together on many occasions throughout the year, the most notable being the Louisiana Lehrhaus, in which rabbis, cantors, and knowledgeable lay lecturers teach courses on Judaism once a week for a four-week period, courses that are open to the entire Jewish community, regardless of denomination.
There are fewer of us now than there ever have been - but these are folks who are determined to add to their numbers, because the last thing any of 'em want is for their houses of worship to become museum pieces. Family is pretty damn important to the Jewish people, and the fact that many of the people here have had to encourage their children to seek opportunity elsewhere rather than in the city of their rearing...well, it hurts in many ways, especially after a catastrophe such as the one that hit this city a little over a thousand days ago. I ultimately hope the Jewish Federation can keep this momentum going.
Despite the discouraging episode of meeting Archbishop Hughes and protesting his measures to close Our Lady of Good Counsel church, Poppy Z. is cautiously optimistic:
We will not close. But it hurts to see the evidence, right up close, that the man who is supposed to shepherd every flock in New Orleans doesn't give a good goddamn about us. No, it doesn't surprise me a bit, but it's a little like the difference between thinking your lover is cheating on you and actually catching them in the act. (Or like that difference must be; I've been lucky to escape that particular life experience.)
I wish her well in her 41st year.
Wish Ms NOLA a r'fuah shleimah after her surgery, too, while you're at it.
I'm in a lesser sort of funk, which has been eased greatly by the grooves in this man's music (shame on you, New Orleans, for missing his recent show! Shame! Shaaaaaame!!!), but, having attempted to revamp my resume and having it come out as too Jewish (still, in Dan's estimation), ˙o˙ɯ ʎɯ llıʇs sı uʍop ǝpısdn
˙ǝɹǝɥ punoɟ ǝq uɐɔ ɟɟo ǝɯ ʇǝs ʇɐɥʍ ɟo uoıʇɐuɐldxǝ lɐıʇɹɐd ɐ