Secular to Seminary: Rachel's Seminary Fund

$496 of $17,000 raised

raised by 15 people in 1 month

 

Hi, my name is Rachel De-Paz, and I am currently a senior at a public school in Cooper City, Florida.  I grew up in a secular Jewish household that only celebrated Hannukah, Yom Kippur, and Pesach. Growing up I had never stepped into a shul even on important holidays. I didn't have my Bat Mitzvah until last summer on an NCSY trip called TJJ (The Jerusalem Journey). TJJ changed my life in so many ways. So much so that I've decided to go on a gap year and spend it in a seminary in Israel, but I need help funding my tuition. However, before I tell you why seminary is so important to me, I would like to share with you a story of one of the many amazing experiences I had on TJJ.

 Three days before our trip ended our group went to Kever Rachel, a holy site in Jerusalem. This site immediately piqued my interest. “My name is in the name of this site” I thought. I always knew that my name was special and came from the Torah, but I never felt a connection to its meaning. One of our NCSY directors began to speak before we entered the temple. He began to tell the story of Rachel and then spoke of her personality traits, and I was truly stunned. Almost every story or trait that Rachel had, I found myself immediately connecting to! The most shocking similarity was that Rachel was known for her tears, for crying. All my life I have been considered a very sensitive person. I was known as the girl who cried a lot, and I was even made fun of for it.

 But at that moment it didn't seem like a flaw at all. To me, it seemed like a source of empowerment and spirituality. At that moment, I could feel my neshama, my soul, it felt like the whole trip was a spiritual journey that led me there. My neshama felt at home. And as I walked up to the site where Rachel was buried, I closed my eyes and started to pray. I prayed for many things but there was one prayer that changed my life. I prayed that I could take everything I learned on this trip and become someone who didn't need a label, who didn't need a club, and who didn't need something external to feel good about herself. I prayed that all I would need is Hashem by my side. As I prayed for this, a picture began to appear in my head of a strong spiritual woman, and I had an overwhelming reassurance that I would be this woman one day. At that moment I felt Hashem beside me and I felt my neshama grow with hope and confidence for my future.

 Today I can proudly say that my relationship with Hashem is the strongest its ever been and is only growing. I started to dress modestly and learn Torah every week. I am also very involved in NCSY, I attend three NCSY events each week and work closely with the communication officers helping to spread my story and ignite the love I have for Judaism in others.

 Going to seminary will be the ultimate step in my journey of becoming an Orthodox Jewish woman. I will engage in classes that will elevate my Neshama to new heights and create a solid foundation of knowledge that I am yearning for. I plan on going to a seminary called Meorot in Jerusalem. This unique seminary works with growth-oriented public school girls to help them discover Judaism in a new favorable light. I believe that seminary is not a decision to be taken lightly but is the most crucial time of an individual’s life. It is a time for a growth that cannot be put into words. It is so sacred to my heart, and I will use every second of my time in Israel to develop my spiritual being.

Every penny you donate is not used in vain. By donating you will help me see the light of Hashem in every part of my life and teach me how to be an influential Jewish leader. Thank you for your donation and for your investment in my spiritual journey! <3

With appreciation,

Rachel De-Paz

;

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$496 of $17,000 raised

raised by 15 people in 1 month

Created by

Rachel De-Paz
February 2019

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Donations

Eliana Hirsch donated

6 days ago $12.00

Sheila Rimmer donated

3 weeks ago $50.00
In memory of Chaim Dov ben Alexander Halevi

Anonymous donated

3 weeks ago $30.00

Chana Tatikq donated

1 month ago $7.00

Anonymous donated

1 month ago £5.00

Oshrat Faratci donated

1 month ago $18.00
In honor of Rachel's incredible passion and love for the Jewish People and for her strength to continuously grow!

Daniel Bortz donated

1 month ago $36.00
In honor of Your spiritual journey

Eitan Hochster donated

1 month ago $100.00

Anonymous donated

1 month ago $26.00

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Meirav Masri donated

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In memory of Yossi Pessah

Joseph Gucovschi donated

1 month ago $18.00

Zach donated

1 month ago $18.00
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