Rabbi Elliot Dorff, is Rector and Anne and Sol Dorff Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the American Jewish University, Visiting Professor at UCLA School of Law, and Chair of the Conservative Movement’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards. Author of over 200 articles and 12 books on Jewish thought, law, and ethics, and editor of […]
“Do you have to work at a summer camp in order to staff this trip? All of you guys work at camp!” This was the question I heard on my second March of the Living trip from Michal, one of our historians. While March of the Living is in no way affiliated with the summer […]
“Like at a normal museum, we entered, wearing headphones, accompanied by our tour guide. Yet, this was not a normal experience.” – Josh Raikin
Camp Ramah changed my life. I remember no place feeling more at home as a Jew than surrounded by that environment.
I consider Camp Ramah my home away from home. I enjoy having all of my friends at camp around me and I see Camp Ramah as an escape from the stressfulness of my everyday life during the school year.
Judaism has been a part of my life since I was born. My mother snuck Shabbat candles into the hospital in preparation for my birth and I was born on Shabbos afternoon surrounded by my family and future friends, all welcoming Shabbat and my existence.
The Conservative Movement has always played an important role in my life, the center of which was USY and Ramah. I grew up at Camp Ramah in California where I was a camper for five years before I went on Seminar in 2004.
It was Friday night, June 29, 1956 — the first Shabbat of the first full summer of Camp Ramah in California. One hundred and fifty of us, probably dressed in white, sat nervously on benches in Kikkar Tziyyon, as that area of camp had been named, waiting for the kabbalat shabbat service to begin.
In the course of my junior year at Hebrew University, I met dozens of Ramahniks from across the United States and Canada and was impressed with their common commitment to Jewish life, as well as by their unbridled enthusiasm about Ramah.
In the movies, when the hero or heroine has the defining, life-changing moment, the camera dramatically swoops in, the music swells to a crescendo, and the rain suddenly stops as birds begin to sing.