Respect. Compassion. Trust. Friendship. Tikkun Olam.
One of Beth Or's core values is Tikkum Olam - repair the world. To that end, as a community we seek opportunities for our congregants, clergy, and staff to become intimately involved in activities that sustain our moral values and position Congregation Beth Or as a leader and role model for Social Justice. Throughout the year, we offer programs and partner with other faiths and causes/issues to build bridges, raise awareness, take action, and proactively advocate for those who need it.
- WFCA (Wissahickon Faith Community Association) - We partner with Bethlehem Baptist Church and North Penn Mosque on joint-programming that brings our communities together. The clergy for each faith are also invited as guest speakers at each other's worship services.
- Our confirmation age/high school teens participate in the L'Taken Social Justice Seminar, a youth advocacy program led by the RAC (Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism), where they spend a weekend in Washington, DC, learning how to advocate for a variety of causes of personal importance.
- We host timely topic discussion panels, offering differing perspectives and points of view from those with knowledge about or experience with the topic.
Would you like to learn more about the newly formed Social Justice Committee? Email our co-chairs, Char Friedenheim and Craig Schulz at firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome new members to join the committee at any time - all ages welcome!
Resources, Articles and Information:
- The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism
- Rabbi Gerber's Sermon 2/24/17 - Won't You Be My Neighbor? Responses to Rising Anti-Semitism
Beth Or and North Penn Mosque Teens Join Forces to Help the Needy
Sunday, January 29, 2017
On Sunday morning, while Americans flooded airports to voice their support for those seeking refuge in our country, the youth from Congregation Beth Or and North Penn Mosque were packing food for the Boys and Girls Club.
These two groups of young people came from different backgrounds and cultures, yet bonded over their common values. They broke bread together and affirmed their commitment to social justice and interfaith understanding.
One of Congregation Beth Or’s core values is that of Tikkun Olam – repair of the world. Those core values include involving ourselves in activities that sustain our moral values and following our faith that calls us to righteousness and moral engagement within our world. It is our turn to stand up and say “never again.”
In the face of words of hatred, we must speak out.
In the face of acts of destruction, we must help to rebuild.
To the face of the hater, the destructor and the persecutor we must say, loud and clear: you will never silence our voices, never conquer our spirit, never capture our will. Not now. Not ever.
As Jews, and members of Congregation Beth Or, we stand as one with our friends in the Christian and Muslim communities, with whom we have worked to build bridges of trust, friendship and respect. We shall not stand idly by, while their holy places of worship are desecrated, or when despicable acts of violence kill their innocent brothers and sisters. We continue to stand with the Muslim community in this troubling time in history and hope that our eternal light unto the nations serves as a beacon for others to do the same.
As Sunday morning proved, we will not only stand with our Muslim friends we will work alongside them. We will share our sacred spaces with them. We will reach out to them with the hand of friendship and compassion. Above all else, we will collaborate with them to plant seeds of love where there could otherwise be hatred.