Reflections on the Heilicher Experience

As a gift to her eighth-grade class for graduation, Ms. Weiss gathered student reflections and crafted them into a poem. These words of inspiration will stay with her students for years to come.

When God calls out to Avraham for the first time, he answers ‘Hineini,’ I am here.  But this is not just a physical presence, Avraham is saying that he is ‘Here,’ completely. He is stating that he is ready spiritually, physically, emotionally, intellectually….he is ready with every fabric of his being to go on a journey that will set the path for the Jewish people. You are about to embark on your own journey - creating your own Jewish future.  As you leave Heilicher, during your  many ‘Hineini’ moments, know that you are fully equipped to take on the world because of the lessons, values, friends and teachings you have had at Heilicher.  Enjoy this poem, compiled of your reflections on your time here.  -Amy Weiss, Judaic Studies Teacher, 2018-2019 


Hineini, I am here.


Hineini, I am here.

I am here to form new friendships.

To accept everyone.

To grow close to everyone in my grade, and in my school.

I am here to support others; to pick them up when they are down, to laugh together in the ridiculous moments, to lift them up, to celebrate with them, to laugh and to cry.  

I am here to appreciate my friends. 

I am here to make memories.  



Hineini, I am here.

I am here to learn, to get an amazing education. 

To gain skills, to prepare for life, to balance my school work, to not procrastinate.

I am here to explore social justice and values in the world.

To be open minded, to hear other people’s opinions.  

I am here to remember inside jokes, trips to D.C., Wolfridge and the lock-in.

I am here to be welcomed and welcoming.



Hineini, I am here.  

I am here to form a Jewish identity,

To question what it means to be a Jew. 

To learn about other forms of Judaism and practices.  

I am here to be surrounded by a Jewish community and to learn about core values.

I am here to be myself, to be a good person in the future. 

I am here to make myself a mentor, to find myself a friend.

Hiyiti, I have been. 

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