The Refugee Crisis

Today’s post is from Rabbi Avi Winokur and the Society Hill Synagogue community. 

All are invited to join Society Hill Synagogue this week for a Shabbaton entitled, “The Refugee Crisis: Contemporary Immigration Issues & the Potential for Reform.” Society Hill Synagogue is located at 418 Spruce Street.

Many of us are involved in congregations that, like SHS, are partnering with HIAS on behalf of immigrants and refugees. Certainly, all of us are aware of refugees’/asylum seekers’/desperate folks’ often heartbreaking plights, whether they are fleeing Syria or other conflicts or are unaccompanied minors fleeing violence in Central America.  This coming Shabbat is also designated Human Rights Shabbat by Truah. Whether through synagogue social justice committees or just through interested individuals, please spread the word about this Shabbat’s program.

On Friday, December 16, join us for Kabbalat Shabbat services in the Main Sanctuary at 6:15 pm, followed by a dinner in the Social Hall at 7:15 pm. The program will begin at 8 pm, with a presentation by Keynote Speaker Sarah Paleotti, Founding Director of the University of Pennsylvania Law School’s Transnational Legal Clinic. Dessert will be served after the lecture.

On Saturday morning, at 10 am, all are welcome to attend Shabbat services in the Main Sanctuary, followed by a Kiddush Luncheon in the Social Hall. The afternoon program will begin at 12:30 PM, featuring:

  • First-hand Immigrant Stories
  • Immigration Programs & Problems in Philadelphia – A Panel Discussion with Steven Morley, Philadelphia Immigration Court Judge; Cathryn Miller-Wilson, Executive Director of HIAS PA; Rabbi Dayle Friedman, Co-Coordinator of the Germantown Jewish Center Welcome Team; and Justin Mixon, HIAS PA Staff Attorney for Immigrant Youth

To RSVP (encouraged), or for further information, please contact the SHS office at 215.922.6590 or