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I understand Nancy's feelings of apart-ness. Her recounting of her own experience reflects some of my own. I sometimes think these "ice breakers" intended to open people to feeling welcome and comfortable have the opposite effect because it doesn't hit the mark in terms of common experience. I think many of us find our way to our Jewish communities because we want to experience the sameness and to have what is familiar to us (our Jewishness) be our spiritual pathway. Since in any community everyone's backgrounds and experiences are different, it's hard to hit a common ground for everyone. For has mostly been the liturgy and the readings that pull me in...and create the feeling of returning.