The resilience of Jewish communities must be strengthened

2024. Július 10. / 11:48

The resilience of Jewish communities must be strengthened

Sofia, Bulgaria - As anti-Semitism continues to rise worldwide following the October 7 terrorist attack by Hamas, the theme of the World Jewish Congress (WJC) National Community Directors' Forum was to share experiences and to outline next steps. Hungary was represented by dr. Péter Kunos, managing director of Mazsihisz-BZSH, and Dóra Bálint, head of foreign relations at Mazsihisz.

Since the seventh of October, the Executive Committee of the World Jewish Congress held a meeting in Zagreb, Croatia last October, then a meeting of the Forum of National Community Directors was held in Rome in November, and a solidarity program was organized in Israel in May. After these occasions, a recent meeting of community directors from 48 countries took place in Sofia. The co-organizer of the event was Shalom Bulgaria, member of the World Jewish Congress. They are to be praised for organizing the event professionally.

"The World Jewish Congress (WJC) is committed to promoting unity and understanding between different communities," WJC Executive Vice President Maram Stern said in Sofia. He added:

"In these challenging times, it is more important than ever that we stand together against hate and intolerance. The aim of our joint efforts is to build a future where mutual respect and solidarity are the foundations of our global society".

The event also featured meaningful discussions about strengthening Jewish communities and dealing with pressing challenges. Among the most important topics was "Building the Resilience of Jewish Communities in Uncertain Times". In this context, community leaders shared with each other the strengths, practices and determination currently needed to preserve cultural identity and values. At the session, the participants elaborated the modalities of assistance to their communities by WJC and others. 

Echoing the representatives of the WJC, several Jewish leaders also emphasized that while anti-Semitism is on the rise, Israel and world Jewry also have allies, therefor it is particularly important that the communities cooperate closely in the diplomatic arena. They should use the WJC's network and expertise to advocate their interests and bring their concerns to the attention of global leaders and organizations. It is necessary providing diplomatic support and guidance to navigate complex political challenges, as well as promoting dialogue and cooperation with governments and international organizations, churches, and religious communities to resolve issues affecting Jewish communities worldwide.

Additional breakout sessions touched on vital topics such as supporting young leaders (for more details see the link), finding Jewish unity, promoting gender equality and inclusion, and becoming effective creators and influencers of social media content.

Jewish community leaders from some countries - including dr. Péter Kunos - participated in all previous forums of the National Community Leaders so far, and they received a certificate of recognition for this. In the lead photo, the executive director of Mazsihisz-BZSH receives the recognition.

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