The Tu B’shvat seder on February 3rd was a wonderful event that brought together the Jewish community with the Christian and Muslim communities. The DJC, with the help of Karen Robbins and the Multi-Faith Committee, hosted an event that included members of the Eastminster United Church, Glen Rhodes United Church, the Pakistani Community Centre, Neighbourhood Unitarian/Universal Congregation, and the Ethiopian Church to better understand each other.
What helped to make the evening so special was the fact that each table contained a mix of people from various religious backgrounds and we had the privilege of discussing and sharing our different experiences. For instance, I learned that at a Muslim meal, the children are served first and dishes, when passed around the table, always move in a counter-clockwise direction.
Because of the nature of this holiday, it was not surprising that appreciation of the environment and what must be done to preserve it were topics that everyone was encouraged to discuss.
It was a lovely, interactive evening which left all those in attendance with a warm feeling of community. How fortunate we are to live in a city where we can celebrate diversity! It’s so important to have dialogue with other faith communities in Toronto, and I was very proud to be part of the DJC, reaching out to those communities with an eye to enlightening each other with our varying points of view. It underlined for me the wealth of diversity present in that room while, at the same time, it confirmed to me how much we have in common with those of other faiths.
I look forward to more events of this kind where the DJC demonstrates its value not just for those who are its members, but also its value as an important part of the broader Toronto community.
Alan Gotlib, Member DJC Board of Directors