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This Week at the RAC: Lunch in the Sukkah, Rachel Laser in HuffPo, and URJ Biennial



This week wraps up the fall holiday season, and in true RAC fashion, we were in full celebration mode. On Tuesday, we welcomed scores of friends of the RAC and former staff and interns to a pizza party lunch. As we do each year, we decorated our Sukkah with signs honoring social justice leaders. It was inspiring to look around the space and see posters with the names of not just well-known luminaries (such as Gloria Steinem and Martin Luther King, Jr.), but also the non-famous who have worked in D.C. and elsewhere to better the lives of others.

Last week, Rachel Laser wrote a piece in the Huffington Post sharing some personal reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. It’s a lovely story abouthow the March helped strengthen her renewed friendship with a childhood classmate.

The URJ Biennial is getting closer – don’t forget that early bird registration ends on October 18. If you haven’t seen the latest list of speakers, you’re in for a treat. Joining us in San Diego from December 11-15 will be: sports writer and Nothing But Nets founder Rick Reilly; former NAACP Chairman Julian Bond; Member of Knesset Ruth Calderon; Gift of Life founder Jay Feinberg; IRAC’s Anat Hoffman; the Shalom Hartman Institute’s Rabbi Donniel Hartman; Israeli journalist and author Lihi Lapid; and scholar Jonathan Sarna. The RAC is also running an extended program Wednesday afternoon entitled “Social Action Skills and Thrills,” so when you register for Biennial, plan to join us for that special program too!

In case you missed it, the RACBlog cross-posted a piece David Saperstein wrote for the World Economic Forum on “Why Religion is Important in Conflict Prevention.” As David wrote: “In many fragile states, such as Myanmar, Congo and Sri Lanka, religious divisions do exacerbate strife, even where religion may not be the root cause of the conflict. Religion, however, can play an important role in peace-making and conflict prevention and resolution.” Last Saturday, September 21, was the International Day of Peace, and David’s blog delves into four areas where religion connects with peace. You can read it here.

The RAC LAs continue to immerse themselves in their work, meeting with our coalition partners, jumping into meetings with congressional staff, and doing a great job all around. You can learn a little more about them and their work in this story at RACBlog.

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Barbara Weinstein

About Barbara Weinstein

Barb is the Legislative Director at the Religious Action Center. She is also the Associate Director of the Commission on Social Action.

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