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Voices from Convening: Jill Crimmings
July 6, 2017

 At the May 16 Convening event, Rabbi Jill Crimmings shared why creating homes is important from a Jewish perspective. This is the second in a series of blog posts from religious leaders sharing what it means to have a home according to their faith tradition.


Our congregation is actually called Bet Shalom which means "House of Peace."  Many synogogues have the name Bet or bayit in the name of the congregation.  In addition, the word Bet can mean porch, it can mean container, to a harness, or a tomb, the list could go on.  One additional thing to share, this word Bet can also refer to a group of people. Often time, the Jewish people are reffreed to as Beit Ya'acov which means house of Jacob.

  The reason I wanted to share this teaching of the origin of the word home in Hebrew, is because it helps inform the conversations on why home, why bet is so important. In the Tanakh, or the Bible, we know that in the act of creation, God didn't create a home.  Instead,  it was humans that have a responsibility to building a home.  Our responsibility as humans is to work together with God to build homes, and to also not limit our thinking about what it means to have a home.  We want to think beyond the traditional single family home with the white picket fence.  There are many ways to have a home, to be part of a home.  Hopefully by studying the mean of home we can work together with God to build homes for everyone.  Thank you.

Jill Crimmings
Jill Crimmings is the Associate Rabbi at Bet Shalom congregation in Minnetonka, MN.