The Values of Purim

Purim square graphic with mask, hamantaschen and noisemakers


I’m delighted to welcome a return to public celebrations of Purim. I hope you’ll join us for an event and carry the values of Purim throughout the month.

There are many ways to celebrate the holiday, including observing the four Purim mitzvot (commandments), but I want to focus on two: hearing the story and giving aid to those in need.

Hearing the megillah (the telling of the Purim story from the Book of Esther) is an important part of celebrating Purim. Each year, we hear of the bravery of two queens, one who paid the price for setting firm boundaries with her husband, and one who risked death to save her people. With Purim falling during Women’s History Month this year, let’s lift up these stories of Vashti and Esther along with those of other brave women. Tell the stories of your family, or get some inspiration from this article.

Matanot l’evyonim (giving aid to those in need) is an important Purim tradition that encourages us to support others, both within the Jewish community and in the broader community. One way to fulfill this mitzvah (a good deed) is to give tzedakah (charity or righteousness, but also translated as monetary donations) to an organization that is addressing something your family cares about. Also, save the date for Good Deeds Week 2023 from March 26th – April 2nd, to explore the many ways in which you can do good and care for others in our community, including helping refugee families build a new life, filling the shelves of local food pantries, cleaning up community gardens, gathering supplies for unhoused individuals, and more.

However you celebrate the holiday, I hope you find it meaningful and joyous. I’d love to hear about your experience and to see costume photos! Purim starts at sundown next Monday, March 6th.

Chag Purim Sameach (Happy Purim Holiday),

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