After a snowy and unseasonably cold couple of weeks, it is good to know that the first day of spring is just around the corner, on March 20. Then, a week later, we will be celebrating the first night of Passover on March 27. It is difficult not to draw some symbolism from these two dates. Spring is associated with new life, and Passover commemorates the Biblical story of Exodus – where G-d freed the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.
As more and more people are getting vaccinated, a sense of new life and new beginnings is taking hold. And few will take for granted the freedoms we had pre-pandemic. Let’s hope the progress continues.
April brings a time of reflection during Genocide Awareness Month as we honor and remember the victims and survivors of genocides, including the Holocaust on Yom HaShoah. We also take time to honor the fallen soldiers and victims of terror on Yom Hazikaron. Then our sorrow turns to joy on Yom Ha’atzmaut as we celebrate the 73rd anniversary of Israel’s independence.
We celebrate Women’s History Month in March, with the theme for 2021 being “Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to Be Silenced.” We are thrilled to be featuring one of the most valiant Jewish women we know on our March/April cover. Gugulethu “Gugu” Moyo refused to be silent through genocide, imprisonment and suppression to build a thriving life and career and help so many along the way. Gugu- you are a wonder.
Gugu is the first Jew of color to lead a major Jewish museum in the United States. She was appointed the executive director of the Jewish History Museum and Holocaust History Center in Tucson, AZ, in January 2021.
May this new season bring you renewal and hope,
Cindy Saltzman, Publisher Oregon Jewish Life magazine