When Shabbat, Hanukkah & New Year Meet

The picture below seems like the best way to close out this year.

The image of a protest sign freshly painted by one of our young leaders symbolizes the work of fighting for justice. It is an image for Hanukkah, a holiday that challenges us to think seriously about resistance to oppressive powers. To me this picture represents the messy behind the scenes effort that allow us to raise a collective voice.

Shabbat is coming quickly. Literally or metaphorically, we put down our signs, our paint brushes, our credit cards. For one day, we imagine the world is perfect: that it needs nothing from us but to witness. However many people we mobilized, we mobilized. Whatever money we raised, we raised. However many victories we won, we won.

We are so proud of the work we and our partners have done this year. And we are grateful to so many of you for making it possible with your time, energy and dollars. There are a still a few hours left -- just over $5000 will help us win the full generous match being offered. Thank you again to everyone who has helped us get this far and to those who will throw in these last hours.

Of course, the Gregorian New Year is also upon us. Like the Jewish New Year, this threshold is an opportunity to reflect on the year past and set intentions for the one to come. We at Detroit Jews for Justice commit ourselves to ramping up our efforts to get our community on the right side of struggles for justice in Detroit, Michigan, and the United States.

Some inspiration from beloved Jewish poet and native Detroiter, Marge Piercy:


[...] this year I want to call 
myself to task for what 
I have done and not done 
for peace. How much have 
I dared in opposition?
How much have I put 
on the line for freedom? 
For mine and others? 
As these freedoms are pared, 
sliced and diced, where
have I spoken out? Who 
have I tried to move? [...]
Here I stand before the gates 
opening, the fire dazzling
my eyes, and as I approach 
what judges me, I judge 
myself. Give me weapons 
of minute destruction. Let 
my words turn into sparks.

(from The Birthday of the World)







Shabbat Shalom, Hanukkah Sameach, & Happy New Year!

Rabbi Alana Alpert 
& all of us at Detroit Jews for justice

p.s. to learn more about what we've done this year, check out the "What We've Been Up To" page on our website.

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