The holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are our individual and communal opportunities to mark the transition from the past year to a new year. As I think about beginning a new Jewish year, it is an opportunity to reflect on the past year(s) and a beautiful time to renew our commitment to ensuring the vibrancy of our Jewish community. Individually and communally, we transition from the past to the future.
Judaism teaches us that people must play an active role in the world. In Jewish life, the concept of tikun olam (repairing the world) is an expression of the value of making the world a better place. The world may not be perfect, but we have the opportunity, and really the obligation, to help make it better. Because of the noble work we each do, the Jewish Federation is excited to partner with you to strengthen our community. It enables us all to take an active role in nourishing and enriching our community.
This is also a wonderful time to reflect on the kind of Jewish community we want here in the Lehigh Valley. Are we creating the inclusive, caring and committed environment that we would all like to see for ourselves, our neighbors and our entire Jewish family?
The Jewish Federation’s 2022 campaign slogan, Here for Good, is more than just a slogan. What does it mean to be “here for good?” For our community and for people in need, it means Jewish Federation is here to provide resources, strength and support to help build and sustain flourishing Jewish life at home, in Israel, and around the world. It means we are, and always will be, the engine for Jewish communal life in our community. We are here for good, we have been and we will be for generations to come. While we have challenges and opportunities ahead of us, you are a valuable and significant part of leading us into the future. The Jewish Federation really depends on your active participation not only in your own lives, but in our community’s destiny, too. There is room for everyone to make a positive impact for the good of our community.
Despite the challenges that we weathered over the past year and a half, we are again gearing up for the many activities that will take place both here at Federation and in the community. Federation’s Major Gifts, Women’s Philanthropy events, Maimonides Society events are all driven by your goodness to create successful and meaningful Jewish engagement. All a reminder that we are Here for Good!
This time of year also marks transitions for our community. Our synagogues and agencies are also kicking-off the New Year with programs that engage community members and enhance our Jewish community’s vibrancy. The fall calendar is beyond full!
The schools at the Jewish Day School and Jewish Community Center, as well as at synagogues with religious schools, are days or weeks away from the start of a new school year. A new fiscal and program year has all organizations preparing to implement their plans to improve Jewish life in the Lehigh Valley. And, at the Jewish Federation, we are preparing to roll out the 2022 Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs.
Our goals and wishes are for strength, health and happiness. Let us all join together in our hopes and efforts to enhance our Jewish community as we mark the distinctions between the past and the future because we believe that tomorrow will be better than today. Together, we are all Here for Good!
Wishing each of you and those you love a sweet and joyous New Year! Shana Tova U’metuka!