Next year in Jerusalem…
"Brothers and sisters, tonight we have been remembering our slavery and our liberation. But just as it was we, not our ancestors only, who were liberated in Egypt, so it is we, not our ancestors only, who live in slavery. Our slavery is not over, and our liberation is not complete. The task of liberation is long, and it is work that we must do ourselves. As the Talmud tell us, we, like Moses, may not live to complete the task; but neither may we refrain from beginning.”
-The Freedom Seder, April 4th, 1969
The Seder often ends with the words:
LASHANAH HABA’AH B’YERUSHALAYIM
NEXT YEAR IN JERUSALEM
Let us reflect on the meaning of these words for those who yearn for peace with hard-earned justice. We wish for next year in Jerusalem that is shared among peoples and religious communities whose histories are twisted together like an ancient vine.
Today we say, next year in this Jerusalem.
Wherever we live we find injustice, but there really is a better place, a promised land, that we as individuals and as a community can see and feel in our heads and hearts. The way to get from here to there is by joining together, working, marching, and sometimes stumbling, through the wilderness, watching this time not for signs and wonders, but for opportunities to act.
May the spirit of this festival of freedom remain with us throughout the coming year.
May its teachings inspire us to work toward our vision of “a besere velt,” a better world.
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