The Color of Water

what is the significance of these two quotes?

"As we approached the church I started to shake and sweat, and just before we reached the church doorway, I stepped out of line. I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t go inside that church. In my heart, I was still a Jew. I had done some wrong things in my life, but I was still my parents’ child." (158)


"Rachel Deborah Shilsky could drive a car and pull a trailer behind it, but Ruth McBride Jordan had never touched a steering wheel before that day in 1973, and you can make book on it." (168)

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In the first quote, Ruth is at a graduation ceremony, but she never enters the door. The meaning in the quote is that regardless of the things she's able to do, she cannot supress her Jewish heritage; it's a part of her that will not disappear.

I think I'll need to grab my copy of the novel from school for the second in order to check out the context.

Do you go to duluth I'm doing the same thing ?