My wish for you this Yom Kippur

Dear Reader,

As has regrettably become the theme of 2020, Yom Kippur, like so many other occasions this year, is going to feel very different. There are many in our community who will not be able to attend Shule, or will be limited to a short time slot, and gatherings of family and friends for breaking of the fast will be restricted to no more than 20 people.

In my case, most of my family are still in lockdown in Melbourne and my local Shule is limiting the number of people who can attend at one time to no more than 60 (challenging for a Shule of 250+).

While our ability to physically gather in Shule or large family units may have changed, the counterpoint to this is that our intangible/metaphysical connectedness to each other and across our vibrant Jewish community has taken on even greater significance at this time.

Whether it be through exchanging recipes online, Zoom or regular phone calls with family around the world or interstate, or forging new connections with those in our immediate community, the current need for physical and social distancing has highlighted and reinforced our vital need for social and communal connectedness.

Whatever your personal circumstances this Yom Tov, we want to assure you that as a community we remain connected and that JCA, our 23 member organisations, and your community are here for you. Even when separated, we are not apart.

For this reason, JCA is proud to support the Yizkor Moment. This is part of the community-wide

Together Never Apart initiative. At 12pm this Monday, the day of Yom Kippur, no matter where you are, with family or alone, we ask that we all take a moment to pause together as a community for a minute of reflection and unity.

It is an opportunity for all of us, on a very personal level, but also collectively, to remember those who are no longer with us. It is also a moment of reflection and appreciation for what we have – each other. And for this, we have much to look forward to in the years to come.

On behalf of the JCA Board of Governors, Executive and office team, as well as JCA’s 23 member organisations, I wish you and your families a meaningful and healthy fast. I also wish to thank you all for your continued support of JCA and community in this challenging year. Thank you, also, to the numerous volunteers – and particularly to CSG for whom this is their busiest time – for continuing to make our community vibrant, safe, and strong.

Shana Tova,

Alain Hasson, JCA CEO

PS: JCA is proud to be supporting the Together Never Apart initiative to connect our community over the holiday period. I encourage you to share in the communal Yizkor Moment at 12pm on Yom Kippur day – a moment for us all to reflect on the strength of the bond that connects us all.