Marita and I recently took a 36 hour mission to the Arizona-Mexico border to see ‘the immigration issue’ with our own eyes.
We privately toured with the U.S. Border Patrol, visited with families as they were released from Detention Centers, and spent time in a Detention Center hearing stories that I will never forget.
We traveled to Arizona at our own expense because we felt a raw need to know…beyond what the various news coverage might tell us. We were compelled to witness because issues of immigration are a real-time juxtaposition of ethics, politics, and Jewish values with very real consequences to our identity, and of our collective soul.
One of the most famous lines from Torah is spoken by Cain to God after fratricide. God asks Cain about his (dead) brother Abel, to which Cain famously retorts, “Am I my brother’s keeper”” (Genesis 4:9)
From this, our sages pose the questions of who are our brothers and sisters, and who is not? Can we ‘keep’ everyone like a brother and sister, or are there limits to what we are able to effectively do?
Tomorrow night at Shabbat services we will be exploring these Jewish questions as they relate to ‘the immigration issue’, as well as various Jewish perspectives on what is a hugely complex problem for our modern society.
We have dubbed these next three Friday nights leading into the High Holidays as Perspective Member Shabbat Services, so please take a moment to invite a friend to join you in our Sanctuary. We all know that the future well-being of Temple Emanu-El depends on bringing more folks to the Torah that emanates from this holy place.
Shabbat Shalom to you and to your family.
May this Shabbat be one of intention, reflection, and peace for you all.
Sept. 6 Prospective Member Shabbat-Register HERE
Sept. 13 Prospective Member Shabbat - Register HERE
Sept. 20 Prospective Member Shabbat - Register HERE