YAD’s Pop-Up Shabbat brings young adults together for Israel

by | Dec 7, 2023 | Other News

Elana McGovern
Since October 7, young adults have rallied in support of each other and Israel, culminating in a heartwarming Pop-Up Shabbat experience on November 17.

To strengthen ties and contribute to the Tidewater Supports Israel 2023 Emergency Campaign, members of the Young Adult Division gathered on Monday, Oct. 23 to discuss strategies for backing Israel. National Young Leadership Cabinet members, local leaders, and United Federation of Tidewater’s past-president, Laura Gross attended the meeting. The evening continued with the Lee and Bernard Jaffe Family Jewish Book Festival’s visiting author, Rabbi Diana Fersko.

The momentum continued Friday, Nov. 17 in Virginia Beach, when a diverse group of young adults embraced Unity with Israel Shabbat, hosted through the Pop-Up Shabbat Program (a program designed to bring local young Jewish adults, ages 22-45, together for Shabbat). The event was hosted by Elana and Luke McGovern.

Reflecting on recent events, including the evening with Rabbi Fersko, participants expressed the desire to share a space with fellow Jewish young adults amid the challenges of the times. Despite the hardships of the recent weeks, there was solace in laughter, strengthened bonds, and discussions about future Shabbat gatherings. Throughout the evening, attendees discovered common ties, which often happens at these Shabbat dinners. One revelation was the connection between a couple planning their out-of-state wedding and another person who fondly recalled attending bar mitzvahs at the same location. These shared backgrounds added an extra layer of meaning to the gathering, reinforcing the sense of community among the attendees.

To connect with YAD and participate in upcoming events, contact Elana McGovern at emcgovern@ujft.org.
The YAD Pop-Up Shabbat program is funded by a generous grant from the Richard S. Glasser Family Foundation.