Yes We Can Raising the Barr Weekly Memo: Issue 428

Since being fully vaccinated 3 weeks ago, Laurel and I took the opportunity to reunite with our children and grandchildren this past weekend to observe the second Passover seder, finally, in person. We hadn’t met with them unmasked since last year and since we now met the CDC requirements, we got to bring them back to Cleveland for 2 days!

As soon as they climbed out of the car and into the house, they flew down the basement steps to check out the exercise room, play with the balls, toys and rummage through the goodies. Honestly, I haven’t been in that part of the basement most of the year and when I went there with them, I was shocked to see just how much toilet paper and paper towels were still stockpiled since the beginning of the pandemic. Did we really hoard all those paper products? Was I one of those who took more than I needed?

It reminded me of the ancient Passover tale of the modest and humble man who had acquired a precious Passover lamb to sacrifice and roast for the holiday just for himself. At the time it seemed acceptable; after all, this was an important piece of the holiday ritual. But when it came about time to roast it, he quickly realized that precious lamb was more than any one person needed or should rightfully have. He knocked on his neighbors’ doors and one by one invited them to join him in the holiday rituals and feast. He soon found that by reaching out to those less fortunate than he, he had inadvertently created a community, a group of people brought together by his realization that his good fortune was meaningless unless shared with others.

I didn’t realize that each time we shopped we had picked up mega packs of paper goods that, one year later, piled in the basement corner, seemed so silly and selfish. This year brought out the best and the worst in some of us. Imagine where we would be today had we all just reached out, done the right thing, and created more caring communities all around us?

It’s never too late to begin to make this world a better place. Starting and continuing with this holy week for many, let’s all be that change agent. I pledge to do my share

Happy Holidays,



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *