This fall at the Reconstructing Judaism plenum, communities from across our movement will take up for discussion and vote a Resolution on Reparations by the Tikkun Olam Commission. As a Reconstructionist community at Or Hadash, whether it is a decision on the committee level, the synagogue level, or the movement level, we take seriously our commitment to a democratic, values-based, decision making process. In preparation for the Plenum, congregations have been asked to engage in study on the topic of Reparations and to engage with the Tikkun Olam Commission's resolution and offer our feedback.
During the month of Elul, as we approach the High Holidays, we are asked to engage in a Heshbon haNefesh (a spiritual inventory) of our deeds over the past year in preparation for the High Holidays of Rosh Hasahanah and Yom Kippur. As Americans, we are still struggling to engage in a communal process that is not so dissimilar to a "national Heshbon haNefesh" around the issues of race and the lasting legacy and impact of slavery, as well as the racist State and Federal policies that have discriminated against Black people ever since. What a better time of year could there possibly be, as a Jewish community, to take up the intersection of these two issues than at the eve of the new Jewish year.
On the weekend of Selichot, September 16-17, join us for a special Shabbat of Study on Reparations. We are thrilled to welcome Lazora Jordan, LMSW and Dr. Emahunn Campbell as guest speakers, teachers and facilitators for this weekend.
Our Friday night Shabbat service will include an interactive discussion exploring how the legacy of slavery informs our pursuit of tikkun olam (repairing the world) from a framework of restorative justice. We will continue the conversation during our Saturday morning Torah study, which will further examine how these concepts are informed by the week's Torah portion Ki Tavo. Finally, Saturday evening - which is Selichot - will be a culmination of study and spiritual practice examining how the Resolution on Reparations presented by Reconstructing Judaism’s Tikkun Olam Commission can inform our reflections for the month of Elul, and as we turn the corner into the new year of 5783.
6:30pm - Shabbat Dinner (RSVPs requested by Wednesday, 9/14)
7:30pm - Service & Interactive Discussion: Exploring how the legacy of slavery informs our pursuit of tikkun olam (repairing the world) from a framework of restorative justice
8:45am - Bagel Breakfast
9:00am - Torah Study: Examining Reparations through the lens of Jewish text
10:30am - Shabbat Service: All are invited to bring a treat or nosh to share at kiddush
Saturday Night - Selichot Evening!
7:30pm - Potluck Dessert & Havdallah
8:00pm - Program: A culmination of study and spiritual practice! Engage with & examine the Resolution on Reparations presented by Reconstructing Judaism’s Tikkun Olam Commission as an Or Hadash Community, then be part of our Selichot service and ritual for turning the corner into the Jewish New Year.
9:15pm - Selichot Service & Ritual
Information and articles for background and study (just for reference – no prep required for any of the programming during the weekend):
·Read the text of the Resolution on Reparations: https://www.reconstructingjudaism.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/07/Resolution-on-Reparations-approved-by-TOC-29APR2022.pdf
·The Case for Reparations, by Ta-Nehisi Coates - https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2014/06/the-case-for-reparations/361631/
·What are Reparations, Movement for Black Lives - https://m4bl.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/defining-reparations.pdf
·The Jewish Case for Reparations, by Lena Beth Schneider - https://www.heyalma.com/the-jewish-case-for-reparations/
·A Torah Case for Reparations: A Jewish View, by Aryeh Bernstein - https://evolve.reconstructingjudaism.org/torahcaseforreparations/
·Transforming our Unjust World and Personal Teshuvah, by Mark Pinsky - https://evolve.reconstructingjudaism.org/transforming-our-unjust-world-and-personal-teshuvah-considering-reparations-for-slavery/
Please click on the attached file below for the event flier.