We are approaching a new year. 5783 commences and brings with it many significant events for WUPJ’s extended family. On April 26, we will celebrate with enthusiasm the 75th anniversary of the foundation of Medinat Yisrael and, between May 3 and 6, we will be together in person once again in Jerusalem for Connections 23, our international conference. We will once again have the opportunity to meet, reunite, and celebrate that, after the pandemic, we will finally be together again, for the first time since 2017, congregating the leaders of our global Reform Judaism movement in our home at Beth Shmuel/Mercaz Shimshon.
At that opportunity, and on the celebration of Israel as our spiritual, national, and ideological center as Reform Jews, we will be called to work on exchanging our community experiences from the seven regions in the world where our communities develop our modern and significative task of making sense of and carrying on Jewish values and practices. It will also be the occasion in which we will honor the memories of Rabbi Dick Hirsch Z”L and Bella Hirsch Z”L, celebrating in their memories that 50 years ago we established the WUPJ headquarters in Jerusalem. We will have the chance to celebrate the reopening of our home in Jerusalem, in its newly renovated facilities, which are now intended to function as the Cultural and Educational Center of Global Reform Judaism. We hope to celebrate together the challenges of renewing ourselves and renewing this new year, and to call upon ourselves to recreate, with renewed enthusiasm and energy, our task of leading, under our commitment to Medinat Yisrael and with each of our regions, the future of Reform Judaism in the world.
May we be inscribed in the book of a creative and committed life!
L’Shanah Haba’ah B’Yirushalaim! Shanah tovah!
Rabbi Sergio Bergman – President of the World Union for Progressive Judaism