The Jewish Emergent Network, in partnership with Yavilah McCoy and Dimensions, have launched “Confessions of the Heart – Antiracism in Practice, a 30-Day Racial Equity Challenge” for Elul. Based on a powerful adaptation of the Al Chet liturgy by McCoy, the challenge is open to the public and engages participants with a full month of anti-racism reflection, discovery, action and transformation.
“This project and this partnership was the right fit for our times,” says McCoy. “Amidst a global pandemic and a national uprising for racial justice, we are excited to have this project support racial equity by rooting ongoing and developing racial justice practices within Elul’s technology for seeking atonement, valuing human dignity, engaging in healing, and deepening interconnectedness. We are particularly proud to offer educational tracks for both White Jews and Black, Indigenous, Sephardi/Mizrahi and more broadly identified JOCs.”
Through weekly emails and web posts, a daily regimen of readings, videos, podcasts and calls to action will aim to open hearts and deepen practices around dismantling racism. Across diverse entry points, the racial equity challenge will move folks to re-engage their emotions, inspire their belief, expand their mindset, and recover their connections to the infinite. This journey of Teshuva/Return will courageously explore individual and collective capacity for change at the intersections of race, power, privilege, supremacy, and oppression in our lives.
This journey offers four weekly emails beginning August 23, twenty daily prompts, and two virtual communal conversations co-facilitated by McCoy and Jewish Emergent Network Rabbis. It will include two tracks in each weekly email, offering specific resources for both White Jews and Black, Indigenous, Sephardi/Mizrahi and broadly identified Jews of Color.
Anyone wanting to access the challenge will be able to connect to it online here.
For those who would like to subscribe to receive the weekly email with links to racial equity resources and daily prompts between now and the High Holidays, click here to subscribe. You can also follow along on social channels @JewishEmNet and #COTH30 and #ElulAlChet.
On Yom Kippur afternoon, the Jewish Emergent Network will offer many hours of diverse, streaming content, all related to the concepts and imagery of the Al Chet liturgy – such as confession and sin – including sessions that will touch on aspects of this 30-day challenge and concepts from McCoy’s adaptation of the Al Chet. Sessions might include text studies, conversations with guest speakers, movement, breathwork, and more. Follow us at JewishEmergentNetwork.org as details emerge.
The communities in the Network do not represent any one denomination or set of religious practices. What they share is a devotion to revitalizing the field of Jewish engagement, a commitment to approaches both traditionally rooted and creative, and a demonstrated success in attracting unaffiliated and disengaged Jews to a rich and meaningful Jewish practice. While each community is different in form and organizational structure, all have taken an entrepreneurial approach to this shared vision, operating outside of conventional institutional models, rethinking basic assumptions about ritual and spiritual practice, membership models, staff structures, the religious/cultural divide, and physical space.
Support for this project and other recent Jewish Emergent Network initiatives was generously provided by the Jim Joseph Foundation and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation through the Jewish Community Response and Impact Fund.