declaration of state of israel

Rabbi Zemel: Whither Israel? Rosh Hashanah 5782 Sermon

Whither Israel?

Rabbi  Daniel G. Zemel

Rosh Hashanah 5782/2021

Washington, DC


Dear Friends,

I am a worrier.
I worry about serious things:

  • COVID
  • The future of American Jewish life
  • How our Micah community can continue to thrive and be impactful through COVID and its necessary limitations.

I worry about Israel and its future and our future as American Jews in relation to Israel.

To be sure, I also worry about trivial matters:

  • The Chicago White Sox
  • The availability of Deep Dish pizza
  • Where do I find the best butter-brickle ice cream?

But this morning I return to Israel — our relationship to it, my worries and my actions.
This is a huge topic and my remarks have to be brief –I hope not too brief that it prevents clarity.

I am a liberal Jew who likes to push the boundaries and is not afraid to make mistakes.

My Judaism is an eclectic Judaism that I continually create and recreate. I am rooted in the past through both personal and inherited memory.
I increasingly desire a vibrant, tolerant, ethically demanding and personally supportive big-wide Judaism for my grandchildren’s grandchildren.

This brings me then to Israel and the increasingly lonely place of the liberal Zionist…

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