Moving to a new geographic area is never simple, but for Jennifer Anne Moses, leaving a comfortable life among East Coast Jewish society to relocate to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, presented special complexity. The town offered a way of living so profoundly different from the life she had left that she found herself on entirely new emotional terrain.
To try to connect to her new home, she volunteered at St. Anthony’s Home, a residence for AIDS patients at the end stages of their lives. She had never witnessed such dire poverty or extreme adversity. Nor, she soon found, had she ever experienced such profound self-discovery.
As she learned to delve deeper into the love and pain she saw around her, she began to enter a new relationship with the people she met, and found herself forming an even deeper commitment to her own Jewish faith.
Out of this rich experience Moses has created a moving spiritual memoir, one in which the writing shimmers with emotion but is honest, powerful, and carefully crafted. Readers seeking a dip into the pool of lively, probing autobiography will find this slim volume a satisfying adventure.
Linda F. Burghardt is a New York-based journalist and author who has contributed commentary, breaking news, and features to major newspapers across the U.S., in addition to having three non-fiction books published. She writes frequently on Jewish topics and is now serving as Scholar-in-Residence at the Holocaust Memorial & Tolerance Center of Nassau County.