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Emancipation Day Shabbat Torah Service & Picnic

Saturday, 31 July, 2021 22 Av 5781

10:30 AM - 12:00 PMAndrew Haydon Park, 3127 Carling Avenue, Nepean

Did you know that Emancipation Day became a national holiday this year?

Around the world (and especially former British colonies), August 1 is celebrated as "Emancipation Day", when slavery was abolished in the British Empire in 1834. Ontario was the first jurisdiction in the British Empire to abolish the slave trade and limit slavery in 1793 but it was a very incomplete act and anti-Black racism still flourished and continues to flourish.

The parshah for July 31, Eikev is a highly charged and uncomfortable. It is set as the Jews are about to conquer Israel after 40 years in the desert. In the text we read that "Moses warned the Israelites that they were to dispossess nations greater than them, but God would go before them as a devouring fire to drive out the land's inhabitants.” Jews were both oppressed and oppressors in this parshah.

Join us for a shabbat service that discusses:

  • To what extent does anyone, including a refugee, have the right to dispossess anyone else?
  • What kinds of reparations are due to those who are dispossessed? What kinds of reconciliation is possible?
  • What kinds of holidays should we celebrate and how?

Please RSVP to so we can keep track of numbers. You are also encouraged to bring a picnic blanket and/or chairs and some food to eat afterwards (due to public health, we will not have a potluck style event). For COVID-19 safety, please bring a mask and stay distanced from people who aren't in your family groups.

Rain plan: In the event of a rainy forecast on Saturday, we will decide by 9 am whether to go forward with an outside event. If the weather is not good, please check this page after 9 am for an alternative Zoom link, which will be posted. The service will then be offered online.

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Sat, 18 September 2021