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Temple to host serenity shabbat on Friday 

03/13/2023 10:42:26 AM


Fighting judgment and the stigma of weakness are two of the biggest issues when it comes to substance use disorder. 

“When somebody says that they're sick, we always ask, ‘What's wrong? What’s your method of treatment?” Lisa Daniels-Goldman said. “But when they tell you that they're sick with a substance use disorder, you know, the doors close, and the response is often, “Well, just stop or you did this to yourself.”

 Daniels-Goldman knows all too well how devastating that stigma can be. 

 Her son, Jamie Daniels, passed away in 2016 after battling substance abuse. She remembers looking back, and the embarrassment that Jamie dealt with while trying to recover, and the obstacles that arose throughout because others could take advantage of those obstacles. 

 “Jamie was afraid that he would be judged. And his words go through my head all the time, “You can't tell anybody because they won't like me anymore, and I'll be judged,’” Daniels-Goldman said. “And little did he realize how many people around him were going through the same things. And so we kept it quiet. And you just can't do that.”

 Since Jamie’s death, Lisa and Jamie’s father, Ken Daniels, have worked to try and help fight the stigma and embarrassment around substance abuse through the Jamie Daniels Foundation, which focuses on supporting young adults who may be struggling. 

Next Friday (March 17) Temple Israel is working with the Jamie Daniels Foundation and Jewish Addiction Resource Alliance for a Serenity Shabbat, where Rabbi Jen Lader will speak to the congregation about the importance of opening up our ears and minds when it comes to substance abuse disorders.

“We need to bring the Jewish community together and learn how we can be supportive and not be judgemental,” Daniels-Goldman said. “And my thought was that if one of our Rabbis could stand at the bema and say, ‘We understand,’ and could help the community understand that substance abuse disorder can affect anybody.”

"This service is an opportunity for us to come together as a community to acknowledge and address the devastating impact of addiction,” Rabbi Lader added. “We have a responsibility to love, support, and provide resources for those who are struggling, and by coming together in this way, we can make a difference in the lives of those affected and their families."

In addition to the service, those attending the service can bring in old or unused prescription medication (no liquids or sharps/needles) for safe and proper disposal, protecting our community from the harmful misuse of prescription drugs. 

Service is supported by the Jewish Addiction Resource Alliance & the Jamie Daniels Foundation.

Wed, April 17 2024 9 Nisan 5784