Bricks of Hope is a new initative designed to focus on Jews in Israel and all over the world to better connect with each other and to engage with Jerusalem. This is a specially designed campaign for the summer of 2016 (June-August 2016) to educate and connect less engaged Jews with the Three weeks( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Three_Weeks). Most Jews I find don't connect with this time at all. Tradition says that Jerusalem and thus the unity of Jewish people, was demolished due to Sinat Chinam, pure hate. The Three Weeks aim to remind us that if we do good for the other, then we have a chance to hate less, connect more by doing good deeds.
During the Three weeks in the summer of 2014, I personally experienced a time of unity during Operation Protective Edge, where I spent these three weeks at Sheba Hospital in Israel. I saw Orthodox Jews, Secular Israeli's, Americans, Rabbi's, Israeli comedians, kids, all visit soldiers in the hospital at a time of need. There was singing and togetherness, a sense of hope and desire for better. While the experience occurred during an unfortunate time, the lessons learned could be applied in an effective manner. I want to reach as many Jews to do 2 things: connect with your neighbor and engage with Jerusalem. 1) Perhaps we always tiptoe past the doorway of our elderly neightbor because we don't have the time to sit down and shmooze, or we fought with someone in the carpool lane, perhaps we have a family member we aren't speaking with... The iniative would suggest options of how to move past these difficulties, to do good when less expected, or even something simple as cook dinner for someone sick. We will encourage people to share and spread their good deeds via social media. 2) With that, we should not forget Jerusalem. The iniative will encourage those who can and wish to engage with Jerusalem-- visit, take your child that has never been there, tour the old city and understand its complexities, learn something about Jerusalem via texts we offer, give to a charity. Each good deed, each connection we make, can build the bricks of Jerusalem, of hope and of unity.
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