As we prepare to celebrate the Hanukkah holiday, and count down the final days of the calendar year, I wanted to share with you some thoughts and wishes.
I recently attended on behalf of Burquest a Jewish Community Building conference and was reminded of the importance of a shared identity within our community. Many things differentiate us from another, including the languages we speak at home, the countries we were born in, and the ways in which we express our Judaism. But I would like to focus on what is common. Despite differences, we all share our connection to our Jewish roots and desire to have our children immersed in the rich traditions of our history.
Burquest is working hard is to ensure that EVERYONE who is connected to Burquest, be it through program participation, planning, volunteering, donating, or in other ways gets a sense of: meaning - having voice and influence, feeling part of a collective; develops a sense of belonging - having your participation with Burquest become a part of your identity; and purpose - that being involved with us feeds your heart and helps you accomplish your and your family’s goals.
This brings me to another important concept and that is of hope and action. I heard a fascinating interview with Jane Goodall that affirmed for me the importance of hope. We are inundated by negative news from mainstream and social media, which can lead to feelings of being overwhelmed, developing a sense of pessimism and helplessness. In order to remain an active participant within the world, we must maintain gratitude and hope! Gratitude for even the smallest things that make us smile and hope can collectively make a positive impact on our world, bits and pieces of Tikkun Olam.
Within our small but growing community I would like to personally invite you to get involved through gifts of time, talent or treasure:
Volunteer your time, energy, or expertise
Donate funds to sustain our programming and facility
Lead activities, initiate ideas, take ownership
Collaborate by working with others towards a common goal
Show up consistently to show your support
There is true magic in collective power for good, as the history of the Maccabees teaches us. Collectively we can stand against oppression, we can imagine and create a better future for our children and we can grow our community so that it may thrive for generations to come.
As I light the first Hanukkah candle with my family on Sunday evening I will say a thank you to the amazing selfless people that give, contribute and support and hope for more goodness in the world - one that I truly believe each and everyone of us can be a part of.
May your homes be filled with light, hope, and deliciousness in this holiday season!