DC Jewish Community Gathers for Havdalah in Support of Refugees
Feb 10, 2017
WASHINGTON – On Saturday evening, February 11, 2017, HIAS, the global Jewish nonprofit that protects refugees, will bring together the Washington, D.C., community for a Havdalah service in support of refugees. The service is open to the public and will be held at Washington Hebrew Congregation at 8 p.m.
The gathering, co-sponsored by Washington Hebrew and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, will include a traditional Havdalah service, speakers, readings, and music to acknowledge the Jewish community’s refugee past and show support for welcoming today’s refugees.
Participants will raise up their voices together to call on elected officials to reject President Trump’s executive order suspending the U.S. refugee program and demand that America's doors stay open to refugees fleeing violence and persecution.
The service will take place at 8 p.m. at Washington Hebrew Congregation, 3935 Macomb Street, NW.
Guest speakers will include:
- Rabbi M. Bruce Lustig, Susan Shankman, and Joseph Skloot, Washington Hebrew Congregation
- Mark Hetfield, President and CEO, HIAS
- Guila Franklin Siegel, Associate Director, JCRC of Greater Washington
- Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, Outreach Director, Dar Al Hijrah Islamic Center; former Muslim chaplain at Howard University
- Rabbi Aaron Alexander, Adas Israel Congregation
- Oula Alrifai, Syrian asylee; Co-founder and Executive Director, Syrian-American Network for Aid and Development
- Maharat Ruth Balinsky Friedman, Ohev Sholom – The National Synagogue
As the Jewish community and others gather in Washington to support refugees, sister actions will take place in cities across the country this weekend – a full list is available here. Together with HIAS, synagogues and Jewish organizations are convening local actions to demonstrate a powerful Jewish voice nationwide in support of refugees. These actions are part of HIAS’ ongoing Welcome Campaign, which has engaged more than 260 synagogues and over 1,900 rabbis around refugee advocacy work.
National organizations that are co-sponsoring the National Day of Jewish Action for Refugees are (list in formation):
American Jewish Committee | American Jewish World Service | Avodah | Anti-Defamation League | Bend the Arc | Central Conference of American Rabbis | Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation | Hebrew Union College | J Street | Jacob Balustein Institute for the Advancement of Human Rights | Jewish Council for Public Affairs | Jewish Theological Seminary | Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees | National Council of Jewish Women | New Israel Fund | Rabbinical Assembly | Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association | T’ruah: A Rabbinic Call for Human Rights | Union for Reform Judaism | Women of Reform Judaism