What is the purpose of Memory?
Memory roots us firmly in the past. The life of the Jewish people is composed of sacred moments which, when recalled, inspire us to live our lives according to certain Judaic values. Memory is a precious gift, for it transforms the discrete moments in our lives and events in history into an unfolding narrative. We become acutely aware of being a part of an eternal people that began a spiritual journey in the distant past with its goal to be realized in the remote future. – excerpts from My Jewish Learning.
Temple Shalom Memorial Room
Temple Shalom had a Memorial Room in place for decades, this was an area where congregants go to be alone with their thoughts and remember those loved ones that had passed through remembrance and prayer.
Dedication of the Brownstein/Munn Memorial Room
In May of 2008, Cindy and Irv Munn, through their generosity, redesigned and refurbished our past Memorial Room into the beautiful Memorial Room we have today. The following are a few words from the dedication of the new Memorial Room, on May 16, 2008, from both Cindy and Irv:
Cindy: As many of you know, I grew up in a small town in Mississippi. There were five Jews in my Sunday school class and two were cousins. Both my grandparents died when I was a teenager. In their memory, my parents dedicated the boards that held the memorial plaques in the sanctuary of our small Temple in Clarksdale, Mississippi.
My parents, Harold and Sylvia Brownstein, instilled in me a sense of pride in our religion’s uniqueness and an obligation to represent Jews in the most positive light. I know my parents would be deeply honored knowing this Memorial Room is named in their honor. I also know they would be the first to say that this room in not a place for our family to honor our parents; but a place for all families to honor the memory of those who have shaped the paths upon which we travel.
Irv: My parents were born and grew up in Lodz, Poland. They were holocaust survivors. My mom lost two brothers, while my dad lost his parents, a brother, and a sister. When the Munn’s came to the United States in 1949, they had no belongings . . . nothing concrete to help them remember the loved ones they had lost.
Both the Munn’s and Brownstein’s had striking differences, the Munn’s spoke Yiddish, while the Brownstein’s spoke Southern! But despite the obvious differences, both sets of parents had striking similarities. The loved their families and would do anything for them; and they showed great compassion for others, always helping out those that were less fortunate.
We are pleased to now be able to make this contribution to Temple Shalom. We know the values embraced by Temple Shalom are those that our parents taught. We hope that many others will be able to sit in this Memorial Room and remember and celebrate the lives of their loved ones.
May the memory of all of our loved ones, always be for a blessing.