The e-mail began, “My beautiful mom died yesterday.”
The rest, all three lines of it, detailed the time, date and location of the memorial service that would be held for Lesley, a lovely woman who succumbed to congestive heart failure last month.
Lesley raised two successful, grounded daughters – one of whom was a close high school friend of mine. I was eager to be there for her.
Still, the memorial was at a church, and a little alarm went off in the back of my head as I drove through the familiar streets of my childhood to get there. It’s the same little warning that sounds whenever I’m invited to a church event. I am not Orthodox, but I do understand why some Orthodox Jews won’t enter churches: I so thoroughly and completely don’t belong in them.