Rabbi Carnie Shalom Rose, Congregation B’nai Amoona, St. Louis

Rabbi Carnie Shalom Rose, Congregation B’nai Amoona, St. Louis

The recent videos issued by the Misrad HaKlitah got me thinking anew about the word Klitah. Of course, when we first contemplate the word, we instinctively focus on the absorption and acclimation of new immigrants from the Diaspora; a most challenging job that, without question, has been done admirably by the State of Israel…

But maybe – just maybe – these ads and the furor they have ignited provide us with a unique opportunity to re-imagine what a Misrad HaKlitah might be as we enter the 2nd decade of the 21st century; a new era with a new ethos…

Maybe – just maybe – we need to assign a heretofore unexplored raison d’être to this governmental body. The task not of absorption of either new or returning immigrants, but rather an agency focused on another possible definition of the word Klitah: “reciprocal understanding and comprehension” between Jews MeKtzot Kol Tevel (from the four corners of the universe)…

Might our new Misrad Haklitah become a shared strategic department of the Jewish People and the Jewish State that aims to:

  1. help Jews in various locales tune-in to the same wavelengths and hear one another more clearly;
  2. catalyze a fuller absorption of what is of greatest concern and import to each of our worldwide Jewish communities;
  3. facilitate higher definition reception of the messages each group is broadcasting.

Maybe – just maybe – this agitation, like the grain of sand inside the oyster, can generate a pearl –- and a “cultured” one at that…

Rabbi Carnie Shalom Rose, Rabbi Bernard Lipnick Senior Rabbinic Chair Congregation B’nai Amoona, St. Louis, MO, USA (on Sabbatical at the Hebrew University’s Melton Centre For Jewish Education)

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