We believe that Israel is at the center of the Jewish narrative and Jewish identity. We understand that our fate as a congregation is linked to our engagement with the State of Israel. We affirm the central Jewish value of love of Israel and are committed to a meaningful relationship with the state and its peoples. We marvel at the wonder of a sovereign nation that has in-gathered its exiles, defended its borders, and moved from pioneering achievements in agriculture to astounding success in high technology. Israel has evolved from a besieged fledgling to a thriving nation that radiates a continuing promise of renewed Jewish culture.
We believe that it is critical to encounter realities about Israel: We need to educate ourselves and to explore our connections to it in order to embrace, to discern, and to help. By creating relationships with the people of Israel who are busy remaking the nation today we can each forge a personal connection to our brothers and sisters there and learn to appreciate the nuances of a complex society. This type of engagement is essential to developing informed stances on the future of Zionism on peace between Israelis and Palestinians, and to help bring about needed social change within Israel. We also strongly support those in Israel who are dedicated to revitalizing and creating new pathways into liberal religious Israeli Judaism, particularly for those who have been alienated by the extent of Orthodox religious and political power in the country.
Through our Department of Israel Engagement we are committed to create rich programming as well as opportunity for conversation about the ever changing landscape of Israeli society and culture. We will continue to pursue various causes to support social action and social justice initiatives in Israel, both as a congregation and as individuals through sponsoring representative speakers as well as through participation, such as the annual Mishloah Manot fundraiser.
UPCOMING ISRAEL PROGRAMMING
Thursday, November 14-Thursday, November 21 | Various Times | Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan
Founded in 2007, the Other Israel Film Festival presents high-quality cinema that inspires conversation and takes an in-depth look into Israeli and Palestinian societies, as well as other underrepresented populations in Israel. The festival explores themes relating to human stories and social justice challenges for Israel and its neighbors. The goal of the festival is to use film as a catalyst for a dynamic and inclusive forum for the exploration of, and dialogue about, Israeli and Palestinian societies. With our partners, we aim to engage our community, deepen its view, challenge its perspectives, and drive it to action.
Wednesday, April 22-Thursday, April 30 | Israel
Save the Date for our new exciting trip to Israel!
Join Rabbi Felicia Sol for an in-depth encounter with women of today’s Israeli society. Meet some of the change-makers who are transforming their communities and changing narratives about the role of women in religious and political leadership. Experience eight days in Israel, including a powerful commemoration of Yom HaZikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut, with a community of women from BJ.
This trip is open to BJ members who identify as female and are over the age of 18.