Blog  New Orleans Blog: Havdallah in New Orleans

New Orleans Blog: Havdallah in New Orleans

by: Cassie Kinneberg, Claire Ivers, Lexi Magee, & Payton Belisle
Participants, Mitzvah Corps New Orleans 2014

We celebrate Havdallah as marking the end of Shabbat and the closing of our week, but also a time to reflect on the days that have just passed and prepare for the ones that await us.

And how this Havdallah is not only marking the end of our week, but also the end of our trip and preparing us for the return to our everyday lives.

So tonight when we sit here as a community, we have the opportunity to reflect together for one last time.

To absorb all of the love, diversity, and memories these weeks have had to offer and use them to grow as we leave form for our paths.

One week ago, we were sitting in an Alabama parking lot, still so insure of what this trip would hold, now a week later we sit here as one knit community in fluid harmony, because somehow we created our own infinity.

As infinity, of acceptance, appreciation and perspective of growing together.



From 13 different states, and personalities of every kind, somehow we all worked together to create a force so strong and a unity so powerful, it’s crazy to think it has been only two weeks.

So as we think as a community, volunteers but also individuals we see the growth in not only the communities but also ourselves.

To see our goals, and expectations be met, surpassed or even changed throughout our time here.

The reflection is Havdallah is a time to recognize our individual voice in this community. To see the growth, development and recognition of how our time has helped us form who we want to be.

Seeing throughout our time here the capabilities we have to change the world and impact the lives around is, no matter how small our piece may be, that without it in the puzzle of our community incomplete.

Take in every moment, appreciate every part of this puzzle, not all changes are big, not all reflections are life changing, but all of them is what creates our puzzle.

Prayer for the candle: “Memories of our lives, our works and our deeds will continue I others.” – Rosa Parks

Prayer for the wine: “Mighty rivers are filled drop by drop.” – Joanne Bland

Prayer for the spices: “It takes a village to raise a child.”- Lower 9th Ward Village

Prayer as we extinguish our candle: “…and never forget you are always as good as anybody.” – Richard Michaelson