Spread over a shelter: message, ritual, prayer for Gaza

It is devastating that as we turn our hearts, eyes, and prayers to the East we see untold heartbreak and death in the past 48 hours in Gaza--at least 55 unarmed protestors have been killed, and more than 2,700 people wounded by the Israeli Defense Force since the beginning of the Great Return March. On the 70th anniversary of the founding of Israel, the commemoration of the Nakba, and yesterday's moving of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, we may feel helpless, infuriated, frightened, and unsure of what to do next. There is so, so much violence.

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Background on Hinenu

In the fall of 2016, Student Rabbi Ariana Katz began talking with Jews in Baltimore about their communal lives and vision for our home (or adopted) city. People have come to the beginnings of this project from various types of Jewish life: religious, secular and political--a collection of heterogeneous identities and opinions, which we consider crucial not just to the formation of this group but its long term commitments. Together we have begun imagining community that has a physical space, shares resources, and houses multiple projects and communities.

Brought together by the desire for a space where Jewish life and justice work could meet, this vision has evolved to include dreams of a beit midrash (house of study), religious education for children and teens, lending library, direct services like food pantry or crisis housing, skill training for religious engagement and political organizing, and most importantly, a place to be, land, feel safe, and welcome.

This space we are dreaming of is built by the community that needs it, and is well aware of all the treasures that Baltimore offers, wonderful synagogues and havurot, collectives and non-profits, projects and other dreams in the works.A synagogue community that celebrates

Shabbat, holidays, and lives in Jewish time together, where there is radical inclusion of left politics, queer and trans identities are rejoiced, converts are welcomed, interfaith families are cherished, and Jews of color are honored.

A Jewish community that marks life cycle moments together, celebrating joyous occasions and supporting each other during healing and hard times, that navigates diverse practices together.

A Baltimore community that shares space, that hosts a synagogue alongside mission aligned projects, like organizing collectives, tool libraries, independent churches, masjids, meetings.