hazzan Diana Brewer was ordained through the aleph ordination program. she leads prayer services regularly at the jewish community of amherst, and is on the staff of the davvenen leadership training institute.

Omer Day 22 חסד שבנצח Chesed SheBeNetzach

Love. Unbounded Giving. Outreach. Loving Acts. Generosity. within Eternity. Leadership. Endurance. Day-to-Day. Long Haul.

Saturday, May 11

Today, I had the opportunity, during a Torah study I was leading, to break the news to an 89-year-old woman that she is Holy.  We were discussing Parashat Kedoshim, in which we are told, point blank, “You shall be Holy, for I am Holy.” She said it had never occurred to her even once that she, or any part of her might be Holy. That was reserved for G8d and Big Stuff Out There...

When I was applying to cantorial school, I had to really ask myself why I wanted to do this. Sure, yes, I had a calling, but why would I want to say “Yes” to such a call? There were so many reasons that my initial knee-jerk response was, “No!” Primarily, I didn’t have time for that. What came to me was this: I am so grateful for my relationship with the Divine, for my spiritual life in general, that if there were any way I could help facilitate that - even a little tiny bit - for others who wanted it, then Yes, sign me up. It came down to a desire to Give. Today is one of the many times I have had the privilege, as a spiritual Leader to see this come to pass.

I could see the face of this woman light up with wonder at the thought of the idea of her Holiness. I believe she entered the Flow of Eternity in a whole new way at that moment.  This is just the type of Loving Leadership I dreamed of as I wrote my application essays, and that I also could not have imagined.

As I write this, I am also surrounded by examples of Loving Endurance - a slightly different take on today’s sefirot - in my life, in the form of our two furry family members, feline and canine. Those of you who followed this Omer journey last year will remember the introduction of the dog into our household. Oy! What a time! As promised, the first two weeks were the very hardest. I was also promised that after the first year, we would see enormous change and progress. I have stubbornly held fast to a vision of all five of us - 3 ladies and two furries - in a heap on the couch. 

Friends, we are getting closer! Through Loving Endurance, and LOTS of help from skilled trainers and friends, we made it through that year, as of last week. The image below is a live-real time photo taken as I write. Well, I did have to put the pen down... It is the second time this week - the second time EVER, for that matter - that these two critters have shared couch real estate in this way.  This couch, especially when occupied by a human companion, holds EXTREMELY high property value. Let us say, the dander typically flies!

I am so grateful for the chance to reflect, and to share these reflections, in this Day-to-Day way, on how these divine attributes play out in my life. May these reflections work to repair even one little tiny stitch  in the fabric of the sefirot that guide and hold them.

Shavua tov. 


 “Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles!”

 “Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles!”

Omer Day 23 גבורה שבנצח Gevurah SheBeNetzach

Omer Day 21 מלכות שבתפארת Malchut SheBeTiferet