>First, I would like to congratulate Rabbi Miller on her 10th anniversary…and say how grateful I am that she chose our congregation when she graduated from Rabbinic School 10 years ago.
Second, I wanted to relate just a few personal moments where Rabbi Miller’s involvement and presence and talents have made a difference in our family’s life.
I have been to a number of funerals or shiva evenings where Rabbi Miller has either officiated or been part of the clergy team that led the service. Aside from her comforting, kind and spiritual presence, her soulful and beautiful singing has often brought me to tears.
When our friend, Jimmy Utterback died a few years ago, at his service, Rabbi Miller sang the song “Blackbird” by the Beatles. Now, this may not have been a most obvious choice for a funeral, but it was the perfect way to honor and celebrate Jimmy’s life. Not only did Rabbi Miller sing this completely “a cappella”, but she sang it in such a spiritual way that everyone in the room felt that it captured the essence of the man we were honoring.
Another story that sticks in my head was when my daughter Allie brought home a guitar one night after being at Temple. I heard my daughter practicing, evening after evening, not really bothering to ask how she decided to start learning an instrument. Finally, one day she told me that it was Rabbi Miller who had given a bunch of kids in her Hebrew High School class their own guitar…so that they could all be a part of communal singing and music. Rabbi Miller just has that way of inspiring people – especially young people – to learn, to grow and to express themselves in positive ways.
Finally, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank Rabbi Miller for being so incredibly supportive of my wife Paula, as a board of trustees member involved with education. What is often overlooked in Temple life is that Rabbi Miller has the responsibility for all the educational functions at TSTI – she oversees the religious school, pre-school, adult education and is the religious and ritual liaison for our youth groups. And she does this IN ADDITION to all her regular clergy responsibilities (like working with B’nai mitzvah students, funerals, shiva’s, counseling, worship services…and on and on). Paula could not do what she does for Temple without Rabbi Miller and her fearless leadership, her selflessness and her absolute love and devotion of our temple, the members and their children.
We are so truly blessed to have Rabbi Miller as part of our Temple community. Congratulations…and thank you, from the bottom of my heart.
From: Bob Lieber