Family was the most important value in my grandparents’ household. We would come together regularly at their house and like every other Jewish family, food was always the main event. Nothing made Bubbe happier than watching her grandchildren eat her amazing overloaded Mexican tortillas and play soccer in her big backyard.
Last week, we celebrated Lag BaOmer, an ancient Jewish holiday that connects us to the events of the Bar Kochba Rebellion, the last Jewish revolt against the Roman Empire which came to a tragic end in the year 135. In Israel, we celebrate the day by lighting bonfires, reminiscent of bonfires that were used by the ancient rebels to send signals to one another. Today, the bonfires are pure fun, as children and adults gather around, roast potatoes and hot dogs, sing songs and just enjoy the warm fire against the usually cool night air.
We cannot change the past nor bring back the dead. But we can encourage and strengthen the living. We can reach out to the brave men, women and children of Judea and Samaria and give them what they need, when they need it. I hope you will help us help them. I hope you will continue to partner with us as we strengthen the Jewish presence in the Biblical Heartland.