Monday, September 28, 2020 -
Print Edition

‘Next year in Jerusalem’: What it means to a broad spectrum of Denverites

Jerusalem's City Walls (Andrea Jacobs)At the conclusion of the Passover seder, four exclamatory words reverberate around the table like a lightning bolt.

“Next year in Jerusalem!” Slumbering grandchildren crack open their eyelids. Smiles animate fatigued faces of all ages. Spirits revive.

Le-Shana ha’ba’ah biRushalayim! Jews express the same explosive utterance on Yom Kippur.

The Passover narrative — slavery, the Ten Plagues, the exodus from Egypt, the chains of bondage broken — demands a punctuated conclusion.

Allow me to digress.

When I was growing up, all “Next year in Jerusalem” signified was the seder’s conclusion. Finally I could go to sleep.

Things are different now.

I have been to Israel four times since 1994.

Jerusalem emanates like fire in my soul.

I long for Jerusalem. I dream about Jerusalem. Now when I say “Next year in Jerusalem,” I think of the actual place — the flowers, stones, street vendors, the Old City, colors, aromas, the sky, the birds.

It’s not religious in orientation, merely an orientation of the heart.

But that’s just me.

As Passover waned and Israel Independence Day loomed, the Intermountain Jewish News contacted several Denver Jews to dis- cover what “Next year in Jerusalem” means to them.

Respondents, who were asked to limit their answers to one or two sen- tences, offered a plethora of interpretations — messianic, spiritual, symbolic, personal, political, ethical.

The rest of this article is available in the IJN’s print edition only. Respondents include Ellyn Hutt, Doug Seserman, Jonathan Adelman, Shaul Gabby and Joyce Foster. Contact Carol to order your copy at (303) 861-2234


Andrea Jacobs

IJN Senior Writer |

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