Dear Happy Minyan,

I love The Happy Minyan. I feel excitement flowing through my body just writing about it now. I believe that anyone who has walked through the door loves it. I feel comfortable being me and acting like myself when I am in the presence of the minyan, and that is no small feat in today’s world. I walk through the door and I am greeted in an extremely warm manner. Many others get up and walk towards me with Shabbat greetings as well. It is a very inclusive feeling. It doesn’t matter how much money I have in the bank or what I do for a living. I would be treated exactly the same way. I look around the room and see people in suits and others in jeans and a t-shirt. Kippah sruga, velvet kippah, suede, colorful head coverings. All colors of the rainbow. And yet, we gravitate to this one special place. What matters most is the inside of the inside and what we yearn for.

The dancing and singing is invigorating, the divrei torah are inspiring, the guest rabbis are diverse. It is not your usual hum-drum, run-of-the-mill meeting place. It is a place vibrant with life which challenges me to grow, expand and open up. It is a place where I am loved unconditionally, where I am accepted with open arms, where I feel needed, where I participate within a community and where my soul feels at home.

I write this letter with great humbleness as well as great pride. Humbleness for being around such amazing people. And pride for the fact that I can call you my friends. The Minyan has taught me that every person is beautiful, special and unique. It has taught me the meaning of joy, oneness and happiness. Thank you for being my teachers and for being you.

We live in a world where many people speak about the negative. Unfortunately, the positive is overlooked or taken for granted. I believe, as I’m sure you do, that it is incumbent upon us to accentuate and highlight the positive. This thinking has brought me to write this letter to you. I hope you will indulge me in some run-on sentences and sporadic rambling.

I have been through a lot in my life, as I’m sure you have. I have tried various ways to connect to my soul. Today I feel more solid and balanced. I wanted to take a moment out of my day to sit down and acknowledge that I do not believe I would be the person I am today without my participation in The Happy Minyan.

With many blessings to you,

David Perl

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