We’ll be honest: Our absolute favorite part of Hey Alma is our community. We love writing for you, hearing from you, virtually gathering with you, laughing with you and holding space to be our true selves together. Going into 2024, we have just one resolution: We want to continue building up Hey Alma’s community.
Here’s another honest confession: It’s been really hard to hold space for everyone in our community for the past few months. Hey Alma has always been a home for all Jews, and it’s no secret that the Jewish community is filled with differing opinions at the best of times… and this is certainly not the best of times. We truly believe that every single person in our community is trying their best to manage difficult emotions and hoping for a more just and safe world, and we will continue to hold space for every single one of us. That means we won’t always agree or have a single unified voice, but we’ll always be here for you and aim to reflect back the many voices of our readers.
With that in mind, this week we polled our community on Instagram about what you are looking for out of your Jewish community in the new (secular) year. Whether it’s from a local community or a virtual one like we have here on Hey Alma, here are some of the things you want this year.
1. Community, snacks, resilience — the norm
2. Solidarity hand-in-hand with respect for the diversity within the Jewish community
3. Acknowledgment and support of anti-Zionist Jews
4. To stand united against Hamas
5. More love and support for patrilineal Jews
6. More love and support for the neurodivergent and disabled communities
7. Traditional but liberal spaces that aren’t centered around Zionism/anti-Zionism
8. Empathy for Gazans/Palestinians
9. More love and support for the queer and trans communities
10. More love and support for Israel
14. A way for single adults to participate in community that doesn’t involve teaching or speed dating
15. Hostages home! More in ahava!
16. Friends to do Jewish stuff with
17. No more gatekeeping who counts as a “real” or “good” Jew
18. Supportive care in all forms
19. Continued Zionism
20. Less Zionism and more celebration of life and of the beauty of peace
21. Recognizing each other’s humanity and a backbone to call out our leaders when they’re wrong
22. Mutual aid
23. Unity and support with those who have different opinions
24. Space to just *be* during Shabbat
25. A place to feel safe
26. Jewish joy!
27. For us all to get along for once and agree on something