OZ offered a variety of programs and events to celebrate Rabbi Amy as she prepares to retire at the end of June 2023.
May 19 & 20
Rabbi Sandy Sasso Visit
Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso is the second woman to be ordained as a rabbi in the United States, the first from her seminary. She is an internationally recognized speaker and author of over 25 award-winning children’s books and two books for adults.
4:30 PM- Rabbi Sasso Book Signing. Books will be available for purchase.
5:00 PM – Young Family Storytime with Rabbi Sasso
6:00 PM- Rabbi Sasso will join in the leadership of services, using her book, The Shema in the Mezuzah: Listening to Each Other.
7:00 PM – Dinner followed by an adult Conversation With the Author.
9:15 AM- Our regular service with a special D’var taking place between Rabbi Amy and Rabbi Sasso on “Women and the Rabbinate”.
12:00 PM- Lunch will be served following services. Register here.
12:30 PM- Discussion with Rabbi Sasso- Women’s Midrash- Lot’s Wife – Bearing Witness.
June 18: Party By the Lake
A celebration to honor Rabbi Amy and Bob Small.
June 24: Farewell Shabbat
Morning service with luncheon.
Below are some of the messages shared for the Farewell Shabbat:
It has been a great joy and privilege to be colleagues with Amy. She is a good friend and she has been a great support to me as we both navigate leading faith communities and all the joys and challenges that entails. We have had wonderful conversations exploring both Jewish and Baptist practices and I have deeply appreciated her wisdom and insights. We have also laughed a lot! I will miss her but I know that she will continue to make a positive impact on the world as she begins her new adventure in New Jersey. Blessings and peace to you Amy! And blessings to Ohavi Zedek as you step into your next chapter.” – he Rev. Karen A. Mendes, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Burlington
Amy, you were a great classmate during the RRC years in Philadelphia and Jerusalem. Wonderful working with you in the RRA as well. But the best has been being colleagues and friends here in the Green Mountain State : ) May you go from strength to strength in this new chapter.” Shalom, Michael Cohen (Former Rabbi of the Israel Congregation in Manchester VT)
Rabbi Amy, you have meant so much to the UVM Jewish community during your time in Burlington. When students have faced unspeakable tragedies, you have been a shoulder to cry on, an ear to listen, and welcoming arms. UVM Hillel is grateful for your service to the Burlington Jewish community and for the time you have spent at Ohavi Zedek. On a personal note, I have always appreciated your willingness to listen and engage in the most challenging topics of Jewish identity and you have always been a support for Jewish students at UVM when they needed leadership from our Jewish community in Burlington. Thank you sincerely for your caring time here. On behalf of our board of directors, students, staff, and alumni; mazel tov and wishing you nothing but joy in your next stage.” – Matt Vogel, Executive Director of UVM Hillel
On behalf of all of us at Vermont Interfaith Action, I’d like to say how much we appreciate and will miss Rabbi Amy. From the very beginning of her tenure, Rabbi Amy energetically participated in VIA’s Clergy Caucus, getting to know and working collaboratively with her counterparts in other faith traditions. She showed leadership in that group with our Movement Toward a Moral Economy campaign, partnering closely with Rev. Ken White from the Christian tradition and Imam Islam Hassan from the Muslim tradition in writing a Moral Economy document. This publication outlined the shared theological basis for ensuring the dignity of all persons by providing opportunities for them to express their gifts through work, by respecting and valuing all work, and by honoring those vulnerable among us who are limited in their ability to work. This document has served as the foundation for much of VIA’s organizing around legislative priorities, from raising the minimum wage to providing more economic opportunities for people of color.
In addition to her intellectual and theological contributions to VIA, Rabbi Amy has also been a leader in organizing events like the highly successful interfaith Passover Seder that highlighted the challenges of refugees to Vermont, and in an impactful clergy planning retreat at Weston Priory. And, too, Rabbi Amy has just been a great person to have around. Whether having a cup of tea in her cozy office or enjoying lunch at The Spot, it has always been a pleasure to share good talks and more than a few laughs with this exceptional faith leader. VIA thanks you at Ohavi Zedek for sharing her with us, and we wish her and the congregation all the best in this next phase of your journeys.” – Debbie Ingram