Rosh HaShanah is upon us and another year has flown by. We have celebrated many joyous occasions as well as some sad moments. Events in the world at large have led to anxious times whilst the Jewish community in South Africa is grappling with its diminishing size. To paraphrase the words of JF Kennedy, now is not the time to ask what you can get from the community, but rather to ask what you can contribute to the community.
Now is the time to rally round the Jewish community, to grow the sense of comradery and togetherness. Not, however, to circle the wagons. The Jewish community cannot afford to allow itself to become isolated from the rest of South Africa, for this too is the community to which we belong. My fervent hope for the New Year is for each one of us to act to galvanise the Jewish community, to come to shul, to take an interest in people at shul, to support community outreach and to help the Jewish community to shoulder its responsibilities to itself, Israel and the country in which we live.
On behalf of myself and my family, I wish you Shana Tova uMetuka.