European Jewish Congress- Chag Pesach Sameah from the EJC’s President Mr. Moshe Kantor
It has been now a full year since we entered the first lockdowns and were brought face to face with the reality of living in a world marked by such a terrible pandemic.
I am sure for many of us those first restrictions were deeply felt on that most joyous, family and community event in the Jewish calendar – the festival of Pesach. A time of happiness and coming together was taken from us and many of us were forced to celebrate without family and friends.
As the year has progressed we have faced many challenges, we and people we know have suffered and lost loved ones. Our thoughts are with all those who have endured such pain and bereavement.
This Pesach too, the harsh effects of Covid have still not left our communities nor our lives but there is a marked change. While we faced the pandemic last year with great uncertainty and fear of the unknown, there is, thanks to the momentous efforts of many, a light at the end of the tunnel in the presence of a vaccine.
Pesach marks the journey of the Jewish People from slavery to freedom. But the story of the birth of a nation is never an easy ride. Our people spent 40 years in desert conditions, unsure of where the next food or water was coming from and harassed and attacked by neighbouring tribes. They were sustained by the fervent hope that salvation and a Promised Land as a free people were just around the corner.
Then, as now, the sight of remarkable events in that Land inspired our people at this challenging moment. As the vaccine rolls out across Israel, we see a return to a life of normalcy, and a source of hope for the whole world that this is ending.
This Pesach, Chag Ha’Aviv, the Jewish Festival of Spring, is about looking forward to a brighter future after the dark winter night. May the new spring bring forth opportunity and hope for us all.
On behalf of all of us at the EJC, may I wish you, your families and communities a Chag Pesach Kasher ve’Sameach, one of health, happiness and joy.