There are no report cards for adult learners in synagogue, so permit me to write a letter instead as we reach the end of our first semester.
Thank you for the great privilege of being your teacher. For some of you this was our first year together, and for some of us this was our 17th year studying together. For all those years, it has undoubtedly been a highlight of my week. Your questions have pushed me to become a better teacher, a more thorough presenter, an enhanced student of Torah. You have made Torah your plaything, your object of desire, your sparring partner (bar plugta), your loving companion and in this you have inspired me.
Over the years we have studied Mishnah, Talmud, Bible, Parshat Hashavua, Responsa, Great Jewish Books. You have been open to it all, patient with me and with each other and welcomed each subject and text. You have exemplified the Mishnaic dictum, hafokh ba ve hafokh ba de kula ba turn it and turn it again for everything is contained in it. This year we have turned it once again.
As we set out for a winter hiatus let me express my gratitude for many happy hours in the classroom. There has been much joyful learning in our Beit Midrash – so may it be for many more years to come.