Every lecture delivered in memory of our son Ariel Chaim ZT’L is special. But this year’s lecture by our good friend Jackie Danicki is extraordinary.
Fifteen years ago Jackie and I met online after she wrote a beautiful comment on one of my earliest blogposts about our beloved son who had passed away.
Jackie and I developed an online relationship that quickly blossomed into a deep and abiding friendship. Baptized Catholic, we had only the deepest respect for the faith in which Jackie was born. And we assumed that Jackie’s interest in Judaism—she asked hundreds of questions—was just her ferocious intellectual curiosity at work. We never mentioned conversion to Jackie. Judaism does not actively seek converts.
Jackie’s path to Torah Judaism is the topic of her fascinating lecture.
When converts to Judaism complete their formal conversion process they adopt a Hebrew name. The name chosen is deeply meaningful.
The Hebrew name Jackie chose is Ahava Ariel. Which means: Love Ariel.
There were few dry eyes in the Young Israel of Century City when this beautiful name was announced.
Karen and I thank Ahava Ariel for honoring our dear son with the taking of his name and for delivering such a beautiful and meaningful lecture. Judaism is richer for Ahava’s presence among us.
We also thank our two luminous daughters, Ariel’s beloved sisters, who now live in NY, for attending this year’s lecture. You made the experience complete.