Shavuot highlights the importance of collective action and free choice

Shavuot brings us joy as we reflect on our Jewish journeys and give thanks for the Torah. We also eat dairy foods, and you can no doubt have your share of ice cream and other treats by joining one of the many services and programs offered by Beth Israel, Beth Shalom, Chabad, or Temple Beth Ora.    

As we engage in this celebration, it is essential to recognize the power of our actions beyond the realm of our faith and into the wider world.  

The upcoming elections provide us with an opportunity to exercise our democratic rights and shape the future of our province. Just as the Torah guides us in navigating our Jewish journeys, we must consider our values and the impact our votes can have on the issues we care about. You can read the Alberta Elections Priority Guide that was created in consultation with community agencies and leaders, Calgary Jewish Federation and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.  

One pressing issue that requires our attention is the devastating wildfires that have plagued our region. The destruction caused by these fires has affected countless lives and communities. As members of the Jewish community, we are called upon to lend our support and come together to raise funds for wildfire relief efforts. Our collective efforts can make a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected and show our commitment to tikkun olam, repairing the world. You can donate before June 2 for a triple match to our donations.   

 This Shavuot, let us not only celebrate our rich heritage but also take action to address the challenges our world faces. Our votes in the provincial election and charity in the community can illustrate the relationship between our Jewish backgrounds and the larger issues that affect us.  

Engaging in our Jewish journeys extends beyond the four walls of our synagogues or homes. It is a call to shape the world and to embody the values of our faith. By voting, we exercise our right to influence the policies and decisions that shape our communities and society.  

Let us recognize the importance of dialogue and understanding amid differing opinions. Our community has many perspectives, and respectful dialogue strengthens our relationships. By engaging in open dialogue, we can work towards a more inclusive and compassionate society. As a Federation, we represent interests to all. Our community is not a monolith and members endorse candidates from all parties  

As we celebrate Shavuot and engage in the electoral process, let us also remember the strength and resilience of our community. Together, we can overcome challenges and extend our support to those affected by the wildfires. The Jewish Federation mission of mobilizing resources to provide leadership is done with your help. We can make a profound impact on the lives of those in need.    

In the genuine spirit of Shavuot, let us bring the values of our Jewish journeys to life through action. Our actions of voting, fundraising, and dialogue contribute to the well-being of our community and the wider world. 

Wishing everyone a Chag Sameach and Shabbat Shalom,