“After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.” — Philip Pullman

Have you ever looked across the sanctuary at Temple Emanu-el and wondered who was sitting a few rows ahead of you… or right beside you?

You may know the person’s name, or that she lives in Lakewood Ranch, Parrish, or Sarasota, or that he came from Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, or New York.

But do you truly know the person?

Now, with the help of Temple Emanu-el’s “Our Jewish Stories” Project, you are invited to share an experience that helped shape your identity as a Jew, adding your story to the stories which members have shared as part of the project so far (and which you can read on this website).

Share Your Story

You can:

• Tell a story about someone who encouraged you to live a Jewish life;
• Share an experience that made you more aware of your Jewishness;
• Relate a moment that fuels your desire to live a Jewish life today.

In case you’re wondering where to begin, here are a few questions to help you get started:

• When have you felt proud of being Jewish?
• Have you ever felt scared or ashamed of being Jewish?
• Has anyone inspired you to be Jewish?

If you’d like to share your story, send it to temple member Bruce Black, and he will review your draft and help you revise it so that you can share your story with members of our community. Contact Bruce for more information or for a list of questions to serve as writing prompts that can help you get started. You can reach him via email.