The recent suicide of 30-year-old Jewish woman Faigy Mayer in Manhattan has spotlighted the unique efforts of a Maryland-based rabbi who provides a supportive environment to young adults with life stories just like Mayer's.
Phil Jacobs wrote this piece for the Jewish Link of New Jersey that profiles the community house of Rabbi Shimon Grady in Pocomoke City, Md. The secluded house on Maryland's lower eastern shore—which the article's headline describes as "A Remote Sanctuary to Save Jewish Souls"—is home to many Jews who left their strictly observant hassidic or haredi Jewish upbringings, as Mayer did.
In particular, Mayer's close friend, identified in the Jewish Link story as "Rochelle P.," spent time healing at Grady's community house last summer.
Grady estimates that about 10 young adults have committed suicide in recent years because they couldn’t find their place in family or religion.
“The girls and boys have no feeling of hope,” he said. “They run from Orthodox, but then they find out that the outside world is empty for their souls. There is nothing out there for them as they try to survive the NYC life. And their friends are also trying to survive. And that’s a problem, because they are so conflicted and sad that they don’t have much room in their hearts to really help one another.”