1/2 March 2019, 24/25 Adar I 5779

I was on a mountain last week when I heard Austrian Radio broadcast Luciana Berger’s resignation speech. It was quite something, hearing her words in that context, in Austria.

Returning to London and Labour’s deputy leader, Tom Watson’s challenging of his leader Jeremy Corbyn addressing what he called “a crisis for the soul of the Labour party” was stirring and sobering;  “My message to our Labour party, to our half million members, is – ‘look, I know we’re in a crisis. The departure of our colleagues is a real blow to us, and we need to understand why they felt the need to go, because if we’re going to be in government, we need to address those concerns’.”

Whatever we are thinking right now, in this decidedly fractured place, Tom Watson’s words are important for all of us to hear, whether or not we are members and supporters of the Labour Party. Last week Liberal Judaism held its first Hot Potatoes evening on issues of tension and passion. They began with Jews and the Labour Party. Talking in our communities remains critical.

“Vayakhel Moshe Kol Adat B’nei Yisrael” Moses gathered the whole community together at the start of Parashat Va-yakheil. As we survey the scene around us, it’s not unity we are aiming for in the Jewish community, or ours in FPS for that matter, it’s the ability to gather and talk and listen.

Shabbat Shalom to all

Rabbi Rebecca