Passover is among the most beloved Jewish holidays. The Seder is rich with traditions, symbolism and memories.
The Passover Seder also offers the Jewish community a unique educational opportunity to reach out to the non-Jewish community; so each year, the Jewish Community Federation’s Community Relations Council offers a model Seder program to area churches and other interested groups.
In 2009, volunteers led Seders in a dozen different venues. Using a special Haggadah, written specifically to enhance the interfaith experience, each Seder provides a taste of Jewish tradition and the opportunity for participants to ask questions.
The JCRC Speaker’s Bureau provides speakers for churches, synagogues, Jewish organizations, chavurot and civic groups and for audiences ranging from young children in area schools to senior citizens.
Established by a vote of the United Nations in November 1947, Israel declared its independence on May 14, 1948 (5 Iyar, 5708). It is marked annually on the Hebrew date.
Social Action – Tikun Olam (Repair the World)
Through their good works in the arena of social action, JCRC members continue raising the Jewish community’s profile with involvement in important community causes. These include the Hunger Walk and Habitat for Humanity and more. The Merry Mitzvah Project, spearheaded by Amy Benovitz is designed to help our non-Jewish neighbors enjoy their holidays by filling in for some workers so they can spend time with their families, providing parties, meals and activities for a variety of groups in the community and assisting those in need. JCRC also does a Purim appeal – Matanot l’evyonim.
Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance)
The Yom HaShoah program is a community-wide commemoration of the victims – Jewish and non-Jewish – of the Holocaust. It is a time to remember and to learn from the past so it will not be repeated.
For many years, the Louisville Jewish community has sponsored a program to take local educators from public, private and parochial schools to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) in Washington, DC. There is a briefing before the trip, and after the trip, participants gather again to learn how to use what they have experienced in their classrooms. Teachers can earn continuing education credits for participating in this program. Information about this learning opportunity is sent to all schools. Teachers should contact their school offices for details, or contact Matt Goldberg at (502) 238-2707 to learn more!
During some election seasons, JCRC sponsors or co-sponsors forums for local political candidates to present statements, answer prepared questions, and take questions from the audience so the Jewish community can vote armed with first hand knowledge.
JCRC is adept at responding to anti-Israel speakers and protestors both on local campuses and off and works closely with Hillel.