No, Thanksgiving is not a Jewish holiday, but it is certainly a deeply held Jewish practice and value to give thanks for both the ordinary and the extraordinary.
Please take a moment to read the email exchange below. I first met Rachamim Elazar when we lived together at Tel Aviv University in 1975. For me it was a junior year abroad program; for Rachamim the culmination of a dream he had as a Jew living in a small village in Ethiopia. During that year this brave young man, largely cut off in Ethiopia from the world we so take for granted, observed and learned an evolving Jewish narrative of which he was totally unaware. That was the beginning of a journey that culminated last week in Rachamim being appointed Israel’s next ambassador to Ethiopia. He is the first Israeli of Ethiopian descent to be named an ambassador.
Rachamim’s story is told in a wonderful book called “In Search for Rachamim.” You can also Google him to learn more about him and the Jews of Ethiopia and their journey to Israel. The link below will get you started.
Today I am so thankful for the privileges we have, and for the opportunity to share with you this true and inspiring story.
To you and those you love, a very happy Thanksgiving,