Camp Ramah, the summer camp of the Conservative Movement, had such profound significance for me. Raised in a marginal Jewish family, indifferent to the content of my Hebrew school experience, it was at Ramah that I was introduced to the rhythm of the Jewish week and the beauty and glory of Shabbat, participatory prayer, and […]
I am sure that your essays about Ramah experiences usually come from those who came to Ramah as children. I found Camp Ramah as an adult, yet it has influenced my life significantly.
Unless you teach him how to swim, I won’t take him back home again!” This was the warning supposedly issued by my late father, Professor Nahum M. Sarna, z”l, to his good friend the camp director, Rabbi Raphael Arzt, when he brought me to Camp Ramah in New England in 1968.
When I was twelve years old, my parents sent me to Ramah Berkshires — that was 1964. I returned every summer, went on Israel Seminar in 1968, and later was a staff member for around ten summers: junior counselor and Hebrew teacher at Ramah Canada, doctor at Ramah Poconos, and then at Berkshires.
Just last week, my family returned from seven days at Camp Ramah in Ojai, CA, where I served as Camp Rabbi. What makes me most sad to have left was not my own experience, but that of my family.