Hi…, my name is Jason Moss, and I am a proud member of the Jewish community.
My Judaism is something I have been proud of for as long as I can remember. I was THAT kid who loved Sunday School and Hebrew School. I never thought of it as something I HAD to do…rather… it was something I GOT to do. I always liked it when my mom came to my elementary school to talk about Hanukkah because I enjoyed sharing my Judaism with my classmates. This pride has remained with me throughout my entire life. It is one of the reasons why I wear my kippah all of the time.
I know that this sense of pride led me to decide to work within the Jewish community when I "grew up." I also know I am not alone in this feeling of Jewish pride.
And yet, I know that for many, since October 7, or even before it, with the unprecedented rise of antisemitism and Jew-hatred we have witnessed these last several years, that pride has been tested. Or at least, not so much the pride, but instead feeling a sense of fear as not to be targeted with antisemitic abuse (in-person or online).
I was thinking about this as I sat and listened to the songs during our Stars of David Concert this past Saturday night. The concert was a musical adaptation of Abigail Pogrebin's celebrated Stars of David book that celebrates the Jewish identity of some of America's most notable public figures. Each song captured a specific theme or message shared by a famous Jew like Leonard Nimoy, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Joan Rivers, Gwyneth Paltrow, and others. In each of them was the sense of pride they felt by being Jewish.
As people left Saturday's concert, many told me how much they enjoyed themselves, specifically how much they needed something like that after everything they have been feeling over the last several months. It was cathartic, fun, and uplifting. If you could not join us in person on Saturday, you can click here to watch the concert and possibly feel the same thing so many others felt… a sense of pride and appreciation for our heritage and our people.
Now is the time for all of us to find something that makes us feel good about being Jewish. Whether it is watching a Jewish movie, eating a special family recipe, listening to Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner do their 2,000-Year-Old Man routine, putting your Star of David, Hamsa, or Chai necklace on, or listening to a favorite song from Jewish summer camp… do something that connects you to our rich heritage and people. I promise you… you will be glad (and proud) you did it.