Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Roses For Ireland

As many of you know I have had a great opportunity to go on several trips with my friend Sally Klein O'Connor A Tour Of Roses. In 2010 we went to Nurenburg, Germany and Krakow, Poland, plus a few other smaller places through out Poland.
While there the team held several concerts and spoke about reconciliation, healing and remembering the Holocaust with regret and forgiveness. In beautiful halls on grand pianos, in a Franciscan Monastery,  in a Polish Baptist church, in parks, train stations, and street corners. Sometimes Sally sang with a keyboard propped on buckets or a trash can, on on the grass. Sometimes she sang while sitting on the grounds of a concentration camp like Treblinka, Sobibor, Auchwitz.... OR in Zeppelin Field in that box hitler gave speeches from.

We were often asked why we were handing out the roses. Depending on which team member Jewish, Catholic, Protestant, Polish, German, British or American the answer varied. It was usually along the lines of "We are Jewish, from America and we just want  to give you a gift and say that we love Germany/Poland."
The responses were anywhere from being hugged and kissed to even a crumbling and crushing of the rose. There are so many wounds.

In 2012 we handed out 5,000 roses in Warsaw. This sounds very lovely, but was A LOT of work. We had to acquire roses, clean then, de-thorn them. (Who wants to be stabbed by a rose?!) And then the walking and carrying the roses, or when we were very lucky DRIVING the roses to a location.
Almost every day began before 7am and we fell into bed around 10 pm, exhausted physically and emotionally some nights.

Word has spread about the roses. Tangible expressions of beauty and the Love of G-d.

What does 2013 hold?
A Tour of Roses has been invited to go to Ireland this April. Roses and concerts but not for the healing of the pain of from the  Holocaust. To help others find healing from their own pain and conflict. It is not a place I ever expected to go. I will be helping to host of a women's conference and there are other public speaking events, and OF COURSE roses and concerts (I am not singing! heehee.)
In the fall there might even be a second trip to another place, but that is still just a possibility.

The trips are not paid for by any one. We raise our own money. I have sold Homemade BBQ sauce (strawberry jalapeno) and used the "tax return" to pay for plane tickets.

We don't stay in fancy hotels, we eat a lot of sandwiches. It is definitely not a vacation. However these moments have changed my life so completely. I will never forget walking a dirt road in Poland and having a "grandmotherly" woman with a scarf tied under her chin, kissing my face repeatedly, "Thank you for coming. Thank you for not hating us."

So here is the hard part. This year has been hard. You saw all the emergency room visits of last summer! One of the paychecks we rely on has been reduced by 1/3. Plus we now have 4 teenagers!
I can not go on my own without help.

For my expenses I need $2,200. Which is 110 people giving $20. It is not alot when you break it down.

So here is my request:
Would you like to be apart of giving a rose? 
Would you like to help be a part of Tikkun Olam, Healing the World? One rose, one life at a time.

This is a project I believe in. All of the money donated goes directly to ATOR. ALL OF IT. There is no administration fees or any other place that it goes to. It is just to spread kindness via roses.

Here is a look at the COST SHEET for this trip. (There is after all more than just my costs. A team of possibly 10 people, $4000 roses, concert venues and all the other costs involved.) However, I did notice TEA and cough drops are not on the list to help keep Sally singing strong!

If you are a knitter, I have a special pattern I designed, Tour of Roses Mittens, that is available as a thank you for donating. (Just mention in the notes when donating that you would like to have a copy.)

To Donate Click on the Top Right Button that says "Help Send Roses" (Under the computer sock). Took me awhile to figure out the tech, but it works now. :)

It was along post, but thanks for reading all the way to the end.

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