Beginning this Friday, April 22nd, the Jewish community, the world over, begins the celebration of Passover, a holiday commemorating the extraordinary events some 3000 years ago when the Jewish people were freed from hundreds of years of cruel slavery in Egypt. We are reminded, every year during this ritual celebration, that Jews too were once slaves and therefore have a responsibility to help all people who are oppressed.
The quest for freedom is universal. Today millions of people from Syria and across the world are fleeing oppression; some of them have been targeted because of their religious beliefs. They are not free. We know that people in the United States are unjustly incarcerated. They are not free. We know that many people are imprisoned by cruelty, hatred, ignorance or fear. They are not free.
At JCCA we strive every day to overcome oppression, to heal wounds and to repair broken lives. Because of your commitment and hard work, we often succeed in transforming lives and in freeing our children and their families from personal turmoil and strife, helping them pave their way to stability.
Passover is a fitting time for all of us to rededicate ourselves to the Jewish mandate of tikkun olam– the responsibility of each of us to repair the world and help make it a better place for everyone. The holiday also coincides with spring and a season of rebirth.
May it be a time of renewal for the children, young people and families we have been entrusted to help, for you and your family, and for the millions of people in this country and around the globe who seek freedom and a better life.
Ronald E. Richter, CEO
Barbara Salmanson, President of the Board of Trustees