On Yom Kippur morning, we will hear the familiar, 2,000 year-old call to action as we chant the Haftarah from Isaiah: “This is the fast I desire…to let the oppressed go free; to share your bread with the hungry…”
Every day, more than one billion people go hungry even though there is more than enough food for all. For those of us who choose to fast as a Jewish practice, Yom Kippur is an opportunity to contemplate global injustice and to take meaningful action to help those all over the world for whom fasting is not a ritual, but a chronic reality.
This Yom Kippur, I encourage you to support American Jewish World Service’s campaign, Reflect Back: Fast Forward, by donating the “savings” of your fast—the money you would ordinarily spend on a day’s worth of food—to support AJWS’s efforts to combat hunger around the world.
Pervasive food insecurity in the developing world does not exist because of food scarcity, but because of political and economic policies that do not prioritize the world’s poor. Focusing on global hunger this Yom Kippur is a fitting way to imbue our fast with a renewed sense of urgency and commitment to Isaiah’s charge—to harness our tradition for the purpose of making the world a more just place.
I hope you will join with me in supporting this campaign and warmly welcome you to be part of Kehillah for High Holy Days and Shabbat! I’d love to hear from you!