Register for the WZO’s International Bible Competition

bible contest2There is no book that expresses the diversity of our values as a people more than the Bible.

The International Bible Competition is a golden opportunity to reconnect with our roots, to return to our values and strive for excellence.

If you love the Book of Books, the World Zionist Organization and the American Zionist Movement invite you to register for the International Bible Contest for Adults, where you can show off your knowledge of the Bible.

Register today online

 

 

 

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Join the Intergenerational Dialogue with Muki Tsur

Muki Tsur, educator and raconteur, will address the theme: Gazing from Mount Nebo, with former students and youth movement participants from across the generations.  This is an  extraordinary opportunity to hear one of Israel’s leading educational thinkers and story-tellers.  This Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israel Independence Day) Muki was one of the 12 individuals who was asked to light one of the torches on Mount Herzl at the official public celebration, a high honor.

Join us for an evening to savor and  remember.

There is no charge to participate, but you must register.

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Voices Fellowship Program in Philadephia and New York

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Progressive Jewish communities in North America are often concerned about certain phenomena occurring in the Jewish State that they recognize as counter their conceptions of Jewish social justice.

It is time for us to come together and build an open and safe space for learning, questioning, and discussing the conflicts that arise in our commitments when we attempt to actualize various ideologies and values.

Four partners (AZM, Ameninu, World Zionist Organization and Binah) have joined together to bring these issues to the table. We believe in the importance of voicing opinions and listening to others’ opinions through learning ancient and modern text, meeting with academic speakers and organizational leaders, and engaging in respectful provocative conversation.  Through the process, we will find new and meaningful ways to grapple with the problematic realities facing world Jewry and the Jewish State.

The Voices Fellowship is a pilot program being launched in New York and Philadelphia this spring. The program is designed to engage its selected participants in a deep discussion about Judaism, Zionism, social justice and Israel. The questions raised will include issues of religious tolerance, human rights and democracy, as well as relations between Israel and Diaspora, Jewish values and collective responsibility.

If you  would like to see a program like this in your organization or community please contact AZM to explore the question.

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Mark Tisha b’Av With A Zionist Perspective

Tisha b’Av and Zionism

Romans Sacking JerusalemThe observance of Tisha b’Av Saturday night July 28 and Sunday, July 29, gives us the opportunity to focus on the connection between the destructions of the Holy Temples in Jerusalem and, thus, our connection to the Land of Israel.  Zionism arose out of the longing of exiled Jews for their Homeland.  Our leaders kept the exiles focused on what they had lost and have not let them forget. And we did not forget.  We returned from exile to Eretz Yisrael many times, building a country 2,000 years later.

The American Zionist Movement and the World Zionist Organization presents this series of readings that emphasize the connection of Zionism to the messages of Tisha b’Av.  Despite the proximity to 9 Av, please add them to your readings this year or use them in your private contemplation. In every case, please disseminate them to your members as soon as possible.

May the fast for those who so choose be an easy one.

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Some More Questions for Your Passover Table

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Beit Ha’am Passover Edition

An important part of the Passover tradition is the discussion and debate of the haggadah. It is also a tradition to add new elements into the haggadah.  To provide additional Zionist context to this year’s seder, the World Zionist Organization and AZM offer some songs and texts to be read and considered, as well as some questions to help families put the materials into the Zionist context.

The texts are part of David Ben-Gurion‘s speech at the Peel Commission; the song Out of Egypt (hear it and see it on YouTube) by Alma Zohar, which connects the Jews’ departure from Egypt to the Promised Land to today’s African refugees in Israel; and a reflection by Ze’ev Jabotinsky on the “Four Sons” from the Haggadah. The themes and questions raised in the materials include the collective memory of the Jews, whether Israel helps or impedes the concept of peoplehood, whether the Jews living in Israel and those living outside of Israel are one people,  if Jews throughout the world share a “common denominator,” and more. These questions will help your family and friends reflect on their Zionist identity and their connections to Israel and the Jewish People.

The supplement is available in English, Hebrew, and Spanish. Click below to download yours! Use it at your seder and share it with your friends and neighbors.

 

Passover 2012-English

Passover 2012-Hebrew

Passover 2012-Spanish

Also download the Zionist Dayenu, available here.

See the Alma Zohar video Out of Egypt here:

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A Passover Haggadah for the Youngest Zionists!

Haggadah CoverThe World Zionist Organization presents a Passover Haggadah for Children.

This Haggadah was created by the WZO Center for Spiritual Services in the Diaspora.

Please feel free to print out and share this full-color haggadah for children. Simply download it here.

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World Zionist Organization Mobilizes for Southern Israel

Following the escalation in rocket attacks on southern Israel, the WZO brought hundreds of schoolchildren from the south to Jerusalem, where they will have a good time, tour the city and enjoy some quiet. The students, from grades 1-12, will explore the city with a guide to accompany them. Among the places the students will visit are the Knesset, the Western Wall, Mount Scopus and more.  The young visitors from the South will also visit the WZO’s Herzl Museum and Educational Center, located on Har Herzl (Mt Herzl).

Additionally, for those who can’t make it to Jerusalem, the WZO and its daughter-company Tarbut L’Yisrael (Culture for Israel), have sent performing artists to southern communities to try to help relax the residents as much as possible while they seek protection in bomb shelters.  Tarbut L’Yisrael has been in continuous contact with cultural activities coordinators throughout the year and especially during these times of distress.  With funding from the Ministry of Culture and Sports, the WZO and Tarbut L’Yisrael made preparations and have sent performing artists to help relax the southern residents as much as possible and make their lives even a little bit more pleasant.

According to Gusti Yehoshua-Braverman, Head of the WZO’s Department for Diaspora Activities, “With the renewed eruption in southern Israel, and the repeated nonstop rocket attacks on the south’s residents, this department and the WZO’s Herzl Center ask to strengthen the hands of the Israel Defense Forces’ soldiers, its commanders and the south’s residents.  We are happy to host the south’s residents and children at the Herzl Center and hope that these activities will be significant, even a little calming and allow them to enjoy a bit of happiness.”

To help in this effort, please give now.

Many of the stricken communities have been the focus of  AZM’s Purim Connection drives in the past.  Thus, AZM feels a special affinity and concern for those living under this stress.  AMIT, one of AZM’s member organizations and a part of the World Zionist Organization runs many of Israel’s school and is closely monitoring the situation.

Thousands of AMIT students in Beersheva, Ashkelon, Sderot and Kiryat Malachi remained home today from school as hundreds of rockets continue to be fired from Gaza into southern Israel for a fourth day. On Sunday, a Grad missile struck the AMIT Hazon Ovadiah Elementary School in Beersheva, which thankfully was empty. Additionally, a rocket fell very close to the home of an AMIT Beersheva student. The principal of her school has been in close contact with the family.

Most families in the affected area are sleeping in bomb shelters at night, and heavy damage has been reported to buildings and vehicles. As in the past, AMIT has quickly responded with a variety of special services to its students, including offering classes and distance learning via the internet.  You can learn more about AMIT and help them provide these services.

Wherever you are, whatever your resources you can help the people in southern Israel.

  • Keep informed about the situation Don’t be afraid to speak up with your friends, neighbors, and colleagues. Tell them what is going on in Israel
  • When you see media imbalance, don’t be silent. Send a letter to the editor; call-in to talk radio programs; know the facts and speak your mind (don’t antagonize –inform and educate)
  • And please, contribute to efforts on behalf of Israel’s citizens in the south of Israel.
We wanted to keep you in the loop on the latest from Israel’s cities under siege.  I know you will want to help now!
Thank you.
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