One thing that we both agree on is that Temple Emanu-El is our favorite charity.
We like the idea of volunteering as much as we can. Our son, Nathan, served on the board of the Grafman Endowment Fund years ago, and later Bob served in that capacity, as well. Bob headed coordinating ushers for the High Holy Days under Rabbi Grafman, and was one of the members of the “Bread Brigade”. From start to finish, he helped deliver day-old baked goods to donate to the homeless.
In the 1960s, I was active as Vice President of the Sisterhood, and later part of one of the first adult Bnai Mitzvah classes. We started enjoying coming to Shabbat services every Friday night, and I love that I’m able to follow along when Hebrew is being chanted. It makes the services all the more meaningful.
Bob and I both feel that Temple is truly the backbone of Judaism. Our Birmingham community is very unique with the support of its donors and good leadership. And, we’ve seen what will happen when these communities lose the population — places like Jasper, Gadsden, and Clarksdale, Mississippi where Bob grew up. The Temple was their focal point of Jewish life, and today they are gone. We both feel the need to cling to what we have and do what we can to support our Temple here in Birmingham.
We hope that the Marcus family and all our grandchildren will look at what we have given in terms of our time and dedication, and at the fund we started, and in turn will be inspired to continue to be a vital part of Temple life.