In the face of adversity, there’s an undeniable strength that emerges when people come together in unity. Over the past weeks, Jewish students on the West Coast have stood tall amidst a storm of antisemitism and anti-Israel protests on their campuses. Despite the challenges, they refuse to be intimidated or silenced. Instead, they rallied together for a powerful display of solidarity through a Shabbat of Unity, that took place on May 3-4.

It’s heartening to witness the resilience of these students, ranging from various religious levels, as they join hands to celebrate their Jewish identity. In a time when hate seems to loom large, their unwavering determination to stand proud and embrace their heritage is truly inspiring.

The response has been overwhelming, with 120 participating students from 10 institutions including:

  • UCLA
  • Valley College
  • Pierce College
  • CSUN
  • College of the Canyons
  • SMC
  • Southwestern Law
  • UC Irvine
  • Stanford
  • USC

It’s a testament to their collective spirit and their refusal to let fear dictate their lives.

This JLIC Shabbat of Unity was not just about religious observance; it’s a statement of defiance against hatred and intolerance. It’s about reclaiming their right to express their beliefs and live without fear, even in the face of adversity.

The choice of venues for the Shabbat meals and services speaks volumes about the community’s strength and support. Nessah Educational and Cultural Center and Haichal Moshe Synagogue in Los Angeles generously sponsored the gathering, providing a safe space for these students to come together and find solace in each other’s company.

Amidst the chaos and negativity, this gathering serves as a beacon of hope and positivity. It’s a reminder that even in the darkest of times, there’s light to be found in the bonds of community and the power of resilience.

Shabbat of Unity West Coast JLIC students

To all the Jewish students who participated in the Shabbat of Unity, know that your courage and strength inspire us all. Your unwavering commitment to stand proud in the face of adversity is a testament to the power of resilience and unity. As you come together to celebrate your heritage and embrace your identity, may you find strength in each other and continue to shine bright as beacons of hope in the world.

Reach out to any of our Directors to learn more about JLIC and our programming.

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