Over the past few weeks I've had the pleasure of reconnecting with my Jewish heritage, meeting women from across the state and discussing the role of women and reproductive rights in Judaism. I have come away with a terrific sense of an empowered woman, who takes an active role in all aspects of her life: family, career, health, and faith.
I do not pretend to be an expert on Judaism - far from it. It is rare that I have the opportunity to connect with my faith or discuss it's perspectives on today's social issues.
But in the past few weeks, I have had numerous opportunities to connect with women of the Jewish faith, and a consistent message comes forward: Jews value human rights regardless of place, time, religion, race or politics. In this context, that includes protecting a woman's right to make decisions about her health, family, and future.
I have been honored to participate in these discussions, and am looking forward to many more in the upcoming months. I have been welcomed into conversations that otherwise might seem too personal. And I have been lifted up by a strong sense of support - that bringing together women has a value and need in this state.
To those women who have spoken with me and shared your journeys, I appreciate you.