My Name is Chaim Butterfield and I am the Technology Specialist at Sinai Temple Religious School. One of the most important dates in my life was the night of June 26, 2015, the 10th of Tamuz, 5775, the Shabbat night I spent in Jerusalem. Growing up, I was imbued from a young age with the importance of Jerusalem and the land of Israel. However, that Friday night on the way to Kabalat Shabbat at the Kotel, with the buildings of this ancient holy city surrounding me as I walked its streets, I was suddenly struck with the historical magnitude of our Jewish legacy. The 17th of Tamuz was only a week away, the date on which nearly 2000 years ago that the Romans breached the walls of very city I was standing in. It was only a month out from the 9th of Av when the Holy Temples were destroyed. Yet there I was, a Jew in Jerusalem. The Roman Empire has fallen, yet Am Yisrael Chai.
I had been in Israel nearly a week, I stayed on the banks of the Kinneret, visited Golan Heights, and viewed the amazing art of Tzfat, but that Shabbat in Jerusalem I truly felt that no matter what happens in the world, I will always have a home in Eretz Yisrael. That experience is one reason why l’dor vador and Jewish Education is so important to me. I want to bring to my students a piece of that moment, to give them a connection to the generations that came before us and the generations yet to come.