Perspectives by Deborah Corber, CEO

Edition 10,  September 3, 2015

The Response I Never Expected

Deborah CorberIt’s that time of year again. The days are growing shorter, the nights cooler. The carefree mood of summer vacations has given way to a new school season, the Jewish New Year is nearly upon us and Federation CJA has just launched our Annual Campaign. It’s a time of reflection and a time of renewal. A time to look back on the year that was, and to re-dedicate ourselves to the causes and the pursuits we care about.

I experienced such a moment a few weeks ago, when I received a mysterious envelope from a member of our community. Imagine my delight when I opened the envelope only to find an unsolicited donation to Combined Jewish Appeal, with the following words inscribed in the donor’s personal stationery:

Give the ones you love wings to fly, roots to come back, and reasons to stay. (Dalai Lama XIV)

This beautiful gift was from the donor who, in my early days with Federation, had asked me why she should donate to us when she could make a gift directly to the agencies that she cared about. This was the donor that deserved a better answer than I was able to give her at that point (Perspectives, May 2015: A gift to the collective – what it means, and what I should have said). And this was the donor that I had not pursued over the past few years, feeling that she needed some space from the organized Jewish community. Hers was a gift that I’d thought was lost to us forever – perhaps because I hadn’t been persuasive or compelling enough in our earlier conversation.

What had brought her back to us, and what was she trying to tell me by citing the Dalai Lama? That her departure had only been temporary. That no matter what I or anyone else might have said to her or done, she remained deeply anchored in our community. That she believed in our future and wanted to play her part to ensure that it was bright.

We are one Jewish community. We are diverse in our affiliations and levels of observance, in our linguistic and cultural traditions, in our interests and passions, in our dreams and our realities. But despite these differences, we come together every year in a collective act of community building. We think about the more vulnerable members of our community, and what we can do to ease their burdens. We consider the investments we can make to ensure that today’s youth grow into the committed and connected adults who will sustain our community tomorrow. And we step up to make a meaningful gift to Combined Jewish Appeal.

My mystery donor returned to us, and did so without any prompting from Federation CJA. What moved me beyond words was that she chose to stand up once again and to be counted as a contributing member of our community. She chose to make a gift that will have a positive impact on individual lives and on our collective well-being as a community. She chose to make a meaningful difference – a choice that is open to us all, whatever our background, affiliation or means.

As we approach Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, I am reminded of the significance of the Aseret Y’mei Teshuva – the “Ten Days of Repentance” between them. During this period, we believe in the power to influence
G-d’s decree before our fate is sealed. What better occasion to do tzedakah, to make the choice to give to Combined Jewish Appeal?

I wish each of you a Shana Tova U’Metukah and thank you, in advance, for your commitment to our extraordinary Jewish community.

 


  Of Note

Mayim Bialik Featured at Federation CJA Launch Mayim Bialik Featured at Federation CJA Launch
In addition to the Emmy-nominated actress, the Combined Jewish Appeal Launch also featured journalist Zvika Klein and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice-chair of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.
http://bit.ly/MayimLaunch


La campagne De L’Appel Juif Unifie La campagne De L’Appel Juif Unifié 
«La puissance de la communauté » est le thème central de la campagne de l’Appel Juif Unifi
é (AJU) 2015 de la Fédération CJA de Montréal.
Lisez l’article dans le CJN

CJA chair gives back to the community that helped his family CJA chair gives back to the community that helped his family
Barry Pascal never forgets that he is just one generation removed from the Holocaust. That heritage is guiding Pascal as general chair of the 2015 Combined Jewish Appeal.
http://bit.ly/CJNBarry

Combined Jewish Appeal Launch featured on Global NewsCombined Jewish Appeal Launch featured on Global News
Combined Jewish Appeal kicked off its annual campaign at New City Gas with a stellar line-up of speakers to help them get their fundraising season under way. Watch the video now.
http://bit.ly/GlobalVideo

Sun Youth Signs Three Year Agreement with Federation CJASun Youth Signs Three Year Agreement with Federation CJA
Sun Youth recently confirmed a grant by Federation CJA that will help maintain and expand Sun Youth’s kosher home delivery program.
http://bit.ly/SunYouth

Beyond the Bagel: A Jewish Food Walking Tour Beyond the Bagel: A Jewish Food Walking Tour
Beyond the Bagel, a Jewish food walking tour curated and given by a Montreal Jewish food historian is collaboration between the Museum of Jewish Montreal and the Wandering Chew, which organizes food events that celebrate the culture and history of Montreal’s diverse Jewish communities.
http://bit.ly/BeyondtheBagelTour

Montreal Mega Mission: Centennial Edition preview Montreal Mega Mission: Centennial Edition preview
In celebration of its 100th anniversary, Federation CJA presents a bold, new adventure.
Click to Learn More

Pologne: l'existence du «train d'or nazi» sûre «à 99%»  - Pologne: l'existence du «train d'or nazi» sûre «à 99%»
Le Congrès juif mondial (CJM) a appelé les autorités polonaises à restituer aux victimes de l'Holocauste ou à leurs héritiers les objets leur ayant appartenu qui pourraient se trouver à bord de ce train..
http://bit.ly/TrainDorFR

Why some public school parents are switching to Jewish day schools Why some public school parents are switching to Jewish day schools
An interesting piece about Jewish families who are making the switch this fall from public school to Jewish day school.
http://bit.ly/SchoolParentsJTA

Prominent Montreal rabbi named to lead New York shulProminent Montreal rabbi named to lead New York shul
Rabbi Steinmetz is highly regarded in Montreal as well in the broader Jewish community and beyond. http://bit.ly/RabbiMTLNY

Le Canada achète Iron Dôme, le système antimissile israélien Le Canada achète Iron Dôme, le système antimissile israélien
Le Canada a choisi la technologie israélienne de défense antimissile Iron Dome pour son système radar à moyenne portée destiné à ses forces armées, a annoncé mercredi le ministère de la Défense.
http://bit.ly/DomeCanadaFR

 

Mayim Bialik Featured at Federation CJA Launch

Mayim Bialik Featured at Federation CJA Launch
In addition to the Emmy-nominated actress, the Combined Jewish Appeal Launch also featured journalist Zvika Klein and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice-chair of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.
http://bit.ly/MayimLaunch

La campagne De L’Appel Juif Unifie

La campagne De L’Appel Juif Unifié
«La puissance de la communauté » est le thème central de la campagne de l’Appel Juif Unifié (AJU) 2015 de la Fédération CJA de Montreal.
Lisez l’article dans le CJN

CJA chair gives back to the community that helped his family

CJA chair gives back to the community that helped his family
Barry Pascal never forgets that he is just one generation removed from the Holocaust. That heritage is guiding Pascal as general chair of the 2015 Combined Jewish Appeal.
http://bit.ly/CJNBarry

Combined Jewish Appeal Launch featured on Global News

Combined Jewish Appeal Launch featured on Global News
Combined Jewish Appeal kicked off its annual campaign at New City Gas with a stellar line-up of speakers to help them get their fundraising season under way. Watch the video now.
http://bit.ly/GlobalVideo

Sun Youth Signs Three Year Agreement with Federation CJA

Sun Youth Signs Three Year Agreement with Federation CJA
Sun Youth recently confirmed a grant by Federation CJA that will help maintain and expand Sun Youth’s kosher home delivery program.
http://bit.ly/SunYouth

Beyond the Bagel: A Jewish Food Walking Tour

Beyond the Bagel: A Jewish Food Walking Tour
Beyond the Bagel, a Jewish food walking tour curated and given by a Montreal Jewish food historian is collaboration between the Museum of Jewish Montreal and the Wandering Chew, which organizes food events that celebrate the culture and history of Montreal’s diverse Jewish communities.
http://bit.ly/BeyondtheBagelTour

Montreal Mega Mission: Centennial Edition preview

Montreal Mega Mission: Centennial Edition preview
In celebration of its 100th anniversary, Federation CJA presents a bold, new adventure.
Click to Learn More

Pologne: l'existence du «train d'or nazi» sûre «à 99%»  -

Pologne: l'existence du «train d'or nazi» sûre «à 99%»
Le Congrès juif mondial (CJM) a appelé les autorités polonaises à restituer aux victimes de l'Holocauste ou à leurs héritiers les objets leur ayant appartenu qui pourraient se trouver à bord de ce train..
http://bit.ly/TrainDorFR

Why some public school parents are switching to Jewish day schools

Why some public school parents are switching to Jewish day schools
An interesting piece about Jewish families who are making the switch this fall from public school to Jewish day school.
http://bit.ly/SchoolParentsJTA

Prominent Montreal rabbi named to lead New York shul

Prominent Montreal rabbi named to lead New York shul
Rabbi Steinmetz is highly regarded in Montreal as well in the broader Jewish community and beyond. 
http://bit.ly/RabbiMTLNY

Le Canada achète Iron Dôme, le système antimissile israélien

Le Canada achète Iron Dôme, le système antimissile israélien
Le Canada a choisi la technologie israélienne de défense antimissile Iron Dome pour son système radar à moyenne portée destiné à ses forces armées, a annoncé mercredi le ministère de la Défense.
http://bit.ly/DomeCanadaFR

 

 

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