Rabbi Dena Feingold
In this week’s Torah portion, we read an account of the first migrations of groups of people in history. Chapters 10 and 11 of Genesis both describe nations of the then known world, including our own ancestral line, and how they spread out to populate the earth. In Gen. 11: 31, we read that Terach, Abram, and Sarai “set out together from Ur of the Chaldeans for the land of Canaan, but when they had come as far as Haran, they settled there.” People have moved in groups from one place to the other since the beginning of time. According to world refugee agencies, there are a record 68.5 million forcibly displaced refugees on the planet right now. At Beth Hillel, in conjunction with HIAS, a Jewish agency that supports refugees, we will observe “Refugee Shabbat” this Friday: A time to consider the plight of refugees in the world today, using Jewish texts as our guide. Join us.