Finding Resilience in Gratitude

In this moment, global Jewry is grappling with significant tension. Around the world, Jews are under attack in ways not seen since WWII. At the same time, we are probably more connected and engaged in Jewish life and with each other than we have been in nearly 100 years.

As I reflect and sort out the ways we can work through these incongruent realities, I am drawn to the idea of how hope and optimism is so vital in sustaining ourselves, helping us move forward, and empowering us to grow as individuals and as a community. Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, z’l, wrote that giving thanks is “a self-fulfilling attitude: the more we celebrate the good, the more good we discover that is worthy of celebration.” Through celebrating the good, and building upon it while directly confronting the challenges, we will come out a stronger Jewish community.

Seeking opportunities for gratitude serves as a source of resilience and strengthens our individual and collective resolve to balance and overcome challenges. Doing so unites us in times of need, reignites our commitment to one another, and deepens the critical relationships that are the true foundation of community.

It is with that in mind that I offer my thanks to you. Your support of Jewish life in our region and far beyond it, of Federation’s work, and of one another are what make this community so special.

I am grateful for how our Greater Washington Jewish community has grown and continues to respond to shifting needs, locally, in Israel, and globally. I am thankful for how we have continued to create Jewish spaces that strengthen the fabric of our community and where those of all backgrounds feel they belong. And I am humbled and honored to stand alongside so many local leaders as we continue to build a bright Jewish future together.

As we forge ahead into a new year when we will undoubtedly face ongoing and new challenges, we must build on the incredible strength of our community and our momentum and energy to propel us forward. Your ongoing support and dedication to Jewish life contribute immeasurably to the vibrancy of our community. I look forward to the continued growth and resilience of our Greater Washington Jewish community as we go from strength to strength even in these challenging times.

Shabbat Shalom,
Gil Preuss
CEO, The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington