Last night our synagogue celebrated Shavuot, one of the Torah's Pilgrimage festivals (the others are Passover and Sukkot, in the spring and fall respectively), with its annual Torahthon.
You may remember that last year I took part by contributing a commentary on one segment or parashah of Torah, but this year the Rabbi apparently wanted fewer participants. Each person had several pieces of Torah to discuss. Most of the commentaries were thoughtful and interesting. I particularly enjoyed on that took the form of a fictional dialogue that illustrated the extremely strange rules of purity, nothing if not obsessive.
Traditionally, Torah scholars study all night, but 10:30 was late enough (too late for me), since I had miles to go before I slept, and a passel of hungry cats to wade through before I could actually go to bed.
I like this new tradition, particularly since Shavuot is usually celebrated by eating dairy foods, and I don't like them, so I never really connected with this holiday before.
Another impressive event of the evening was the confirmation of 4 young people about 17 years old from the synagogue who willingly sacrificed their Sunday mornings for a year I believe to become confirmants. They were really terrific, sweet kids. Their Torah commentaries often reflected good minds at work and excellent writing skills. When I think of Jeremy at that age, I cannot imagine that he would ever have been on that stage. Not a joiner, like his dad.