A catastrophe, the California wildfires, has hit someone close to IJC. They have destroyed the home of Rabbi Michael Schwartz, now the rabbi at the Malibu Jewish Center & Synagogue (MJCS). Having just moved to the area and finished furnishing the new family home, Michael and his family escaped with their lives. With no home to return to, Michael is also being Rabbi - tending to his congregation.
For those at IJC who might not have known Rabbi Schwartz, he led our High Holiday services for more than six years. He was there with IJC for both very happy and very sad times. There is a deep bond with him.
We suggest that the best way to support him and his family is via this link: https://www.gofundme.com/wildfire-took-nearly-everything?fbclid=IwAR0Ibf1hfJg3bN7dqOX8WGyU8ncHARhPHWueuWLiEWrhLidzoTAn2SeKvt0
As one might imagine, everything is in chaos. Michael's town is completely evacuated and the wildfires may come back very soon. The process of picking up the pieces and determining priorities has barely started.
Michael said in an email today:
"THANK YOU to everyone for connecting and expressing concern. I don't have time just now to respond to each of you as I would like —I need to attend to my community which is still in crisis. Many have asked what to do to help: Your words, concern, and just connecting are wonderful! Thank you everyone... and not quite an afterthought: many are worse off than us, and this morning people in Israel are under fire of a different sort....
I miss all you wonderful people in the IJC community"