Today is Israel's Independence Day, Yom Ha'Atzmaut. You might wonder why that matters to you.
For those who have been there, Israel is an almost indescribable source of passion and pride. It stirs our deepest feelings of belonging. We see first-hand how Israel enables us to feel a bit freer, even in the land of the free.
Yet for many, Israel is just a faraway place that's hard to understand, especially with a disproportionate share of news coverage that's often negative.
The Jewish Federation views all Jews as one people with one destiny; our work is connecting and helping this extended family, wherever they are. That is one of the many reasons we celebrate Israel's Independence Day and invite you to celebrate with us. Explore your connection to the Jewish state and the people of Israel. They're your family too.
Here are some ways to see for yourself.
- A fun, Friday night dinner, a concert, the Israel parade, and much more are all happening this week and beyond. Check them out at jewishheartnj.org/Israelat69
- Join us for one of our upcoming trips to Israel this December or next October. There's simply nothing like being there. Learn more at jewishheartnj.org/missions
- Look at the technology, food, arts, humanitarianism, and medical advances coming out of Israel. From the Grapevine and Jerusalem U are two great places to start at jewishheartnj.org/israel
My best for a Chag Sameach - a happy Israel Independence Day. We hope to celebrate with you in the days and weeks ahead.
P.S. News out of Israel this week: For the first time ever, representatives of Jewry from across the world lit one of twelve torches in the official ceremony opening Israel's Independence Day. One of these, Michael Steinhardt, is a founder of Taglit-Birthright Israel. Read his interview in Times of Israel
P.P.S. And just for fun, check out these videos:
• Small but Outstanding (6 minutes): watch video
• Royal Tour with the Prime Minister (1 hour): watch video