The Jewish Liberation Theology Institute is a Canadian organization led by Rabbi Lucia Pizarro, Founding Spiritual Director, Sandra Ruch (Independent Jewish Voices), Founding Ritual Director and Robert Allison (Independent Jewish Voices), Founding Executive Director.
According its website:
- “The Jewish Liberation Theology Institute empowers the Jewish movement in solidarity with Palestine. We do this by making Jewish tradition relevant politically and spiritually in the lives of Jewish activists.”
- “We stand firm in our support of the Palestinian call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against the State of Israel, until it fully complies with international law and ceases its systematic violations of Palestinian human rights.”
- “We will serve the Ontario community of Jewish social justice activists who work for social justice and stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people today. This community includes the many Jewish activists who have ultimately abandoned the Jewish tradition and in particular the Jewish religion. Jewish activists are estranged from the organized Jewish community and feel excluded. Some have even spurned their own Jewish identity.”
On March 28, 2019 the Jewish Liberation Theology Institute posted on its Facebook page a “Musaf Amidah for Gaza” by May Ye.
“Musaf” is an additional service that is recited on Shabbat (Saturday), Jewish holidays and the first day of every Jewish month. The service is considered to be additional to the regular three services of the day.
Here is the text of “Musaf Amidah for Gaza”:
Musaf Amidah for Gaza:
Framing: March 30th will mark a year since the Great March of Return began in Gaza. I have prepared an alternative Musaf Amidah, offering prayers and poetry inspired by the march. As I read these prayers and poems, I’ll invite you to sing or hum this song to create a container to hold these words.
Together: Sing: Gaza, my friend, you do not walk alone. We will walk with you and sing your spirit your home.
Hum “Gaza, my friend” as a niggun, a wordless melody. Read poems over soft singing/humming of the song.
1. Avot v’imot (Ancestors)
This land has been yours.
Your ancestors bodies have nurtured the soil.
2. Gevurot (Divine Power)
Mashiv ha’ruach u’morid hagashem.
You cause the wind to blow and the rain to fall.
The wind that propels the kite to fly.
We are told that you free the captive,
O dear God,
When oh when,
Will you cause the wind to blow the guns out of their hands?
Will you cause the wind to blow the wall down?
Will you cause the wind to let my siblings fly their kites,
Over the border,
3. Kedushat Hashem (Hallowing God’s Name)
Mimkomcha, from your dwelling place you will appear.
I know you dwell within me.
Because you dwell within all.
The soldier and the pacifist,
The prophet and the faithful,
Will you help the other see the divinity in me?
And will you help me see the divinity in the other?
4. Kedushat Hayom (The Day’s Holiness)
God sanctified the seventh day and commanded us to rest.
Did the soldiers forget their commandment to rest?
I hope they will remember to rest this Shabbat.
Because I cannot rest for as long as my siblings in Gaza are shot dead.
5. Avodah (Worship/Accepting Prayer)
The chants of “We will return.”
Become something of a lullaby.
I hope that you can feel the vibrations of my prayer,
“You will return.”
God, are you listening?
6. Hoda’ah (Thanks)
I know when you close your eyes,
You are dreaming of another world.
A world where you can fly like the birds,
Swim like dolphins in the sea,
And dance on the Temple Mount.
Hashkivenu adonay eloheynu l’shalom.
Help us to lie down, our God, in peace.
So that we may wake up in the world of our dreams.
7. Birkat Hashalom (Blessing for Peace)
Shalom. Salaam. Peace.
These words reverberate through our prayers,
But do they saturate our consciousness?
Oseh shalom bimrow hu ya’aseh shalom aleynu ve’al kol yoshvey tevel,
May the one who creates harmony above make peace for all who dwell on earth.
And let us say,