Unity: Religious and Secular Families Come Together for Shabbat

'Israeli Shabbat' initiative promotes unity, with all sectors coming together to connect with Jewish holy day of rest.

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Cynthia Blank,

Shabbat unity (file)
Shabbat unity (file)
Flash 90

This upcoming Shabbat (Sabbath), October 24-25, Shabbat Noach, and the last before turning the clock, has been declared "Israeli Shabbat". 

"Israeli Shabbat" is a project focusing on positioning Shabbat as a day of culture and community for all sectors of Israeli society, by encouraging national and communal dialogue.

The aim of the project is to formulate a cooperative agreement on the nature of Shabbat in the public sphere. 

"Israeli Shabbat" is happening parallel to the global initiative "The Shabbos Project" which hopes to bring together Jews worldwide to keep the Sabbath. 

"Israeli Shabbat" will feature main events such as city-wide dialogue circles, national conferences, community-wide Kabbalat Shabbat services, and hospitality provided by different types of communities in Israeli society, as well as meals hosted by Knesset members and celebrities. 

In addition, there will be smaller activities encouraging social solidarity and unity. Citizens are being encouraged to shop at community businesses in the South, lone soldiers are to be invited for Shabbat meals, in addition to many more. 

One of the most exciting aspects of the project is that religious and secular families will host each other for Friday night dinners fostering honest and productive discussion. 

These activities will be accompanied by a social media campaign. This campaign aims to grow a relationship of positivity and agreement between different sectors of Israeli society with different Shabbat experiences, showcasing that the state prioritizes building bridges between the religious and secular. 

Partnership organizations for "Israeli Shabbat", including Beit Hillel, HaMidrasha at Oranim, Israel Democracy Institute, the BINA Secular Yeshiva, and many others, are working together to empower such concepts of unity, family, community and social solidarity around Shabbat. 

Many Israeli public officials are expected to attend this year and the project has received the blessing of President Reuven Rivlin. 








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