Together at the Table
Grassroots Shabbat dinners celebrating unity and diversity in the face of fear and division.
Shabbat dinner is an opportunity to be in community, learn from and with one another, and begin to heal from the ills of antisemitism. We invite you to join us by gathering people in your communities and networks for a Together at the Table dinner to engage in constructive dialogue with a plurality of perspectives, to address deep, painful divides in our communities, and to consider the roles we can play in strengthening civil discourse and society.
Reflections from a Host
“It feels like every day there’s more to talk about as American Jews (Jewish Americans? Remember that from Hebrew school?) and fewer places that feel safe to have those conversations. Let’s make a Shabbat space that feels safe to do that. Let’s actually talk to each other. I’ve got love for my people.”
Together at the Table Shabbat Guide
This guide contains the Shabbat blessings as well as education, readings, and discussion prompts to help you come Together at the Table with the people and issues – including responding to antisemitism – that you care about.
Human Dignity in a Time of Crisis
The Conservative Yeshiva is a diverse, egalitarian, and engaging learning community in the heart of Jerusalem. This text source sheet from them can help guide your conversations.
Repair the World's Guide to Respectful Conversations
People will have different reactions to the difficult conversations you’ll be facilitating. Know that being uncomfortable isn’t always a bad thing, especially if you’re used to feeling comfortable. Your goal as the host should be to create a space in which individuals can express and listen to each other’s lived experiences and where both their experience and someone else’s are incorporated into a larger communal narrative. Here are some suggestions about how to create that space.
Shabbat dinner cannot solve all the challenges facing us. But as we have seen over this past year, it can provide a dedicated space and reminder to reconnect with ourselves, our tradition, and our loved ones. With antisemitism rising, OneTable strives to ensure that young adults can gather around Shabbat dinners, for thoughtful conversation, #TogetherAtTheTable.
The History of Together at the Table
On Friday, August 18th, 2017, we first came together to mobilize a grassroots movement of Shabbat dinners across the country dedicated to celebrating diversity, equality, and inclusion in the face of fear, division, and hate following the horrors that took place in Charlottesville, VA.
It is hard to put into words how many of us felt following a weekend in which we witnessed white supremacists and neo-nazis marching openly in America, leaving violence and tragedy in their wake.
Regardless of where we each stand politically, we can ALL agree: hatred, bigotry, and violence cannot be tolerated in our communities. When our values are threatened in this way, we raise our voices and rise up—not just in opposition but in unity. Click here to see all of the partners who have joined Together at the Table since 2017.
Our 2018 Together at the Table Guide
Created in partnership with the ADL, Be’chol Lashon, Keshet, and Repair the World in response to the tragic shooting at Tree of Life on October 27, 2018.
Repair the World 2017 Together at the Table Guide
We live between the world as it is (olam hazeh)- a world filled with injustice and inequity, and the world as it should be (olam habah)- a world where the human dignity of every single person is celebrated and honored. Shabbat dinner offers us a glimpse into the world as should be; the opportunity to create community, deepen relationships and reflect on the week that was. This Shabbat, let’s commit to the world we hope to create together.
More Resources for Your Together at the Table Shabbat
JewBelong on Antisemitism
Antisemitism has been around for thousands of years, but based on current events, antisemitism is growing in the U.S. and in Europe. Read an overview, history, and recent articles on JewBelong.
Reflection by Boaz Munro
In Boaz Munro’s letter, “Your Jewish Friends Are Terrified by Your Silence,” he shares a personal reflection of his family’s story and challenges others to speak up in response to antisemitic violence.
We All Belong: A Letter in Response to Together at the Table
On August 15, 2017, OneTable CEO Aliza Kline sent an email to our community inviting everyone to come Together at the Table in response to antisemitism. Avigayil was one of many to respond and share the movement, but her passion and warmth stands out to us years later.
Charting a New Course
“Can it really be that we have ushered in a new era where it has not only become popular but acceptable to preach hate and bigotry while encouraging violence at targeted groups?” Read about Craig Cohen’s experience of, and response to, antisemitism as a part of an interfaith family on the 18Doors site.
The Issue is Not "the Issue" by Zohar Raviv
“I believe that our mandate lies not with “what people think,” but rather with “how people think” — offering tools for critically sound processes that may assist in forming whatever opinions, responsibly. The following meditations are therefore offered solely from an educational lens, transcend any form of partisanship or particularism, and aim to call on us all, as a people, to pause, think together and reflect. “
Reflections from OneTable's Rabbi
“Olam and chesed aren’t just the ancient Hebrew words for forever and love respectively, they are the modern Hebrew words for world and kindness. To live justly is to continue to do both kinds of work, to build love and kindness in ways that are connected to our past and committed to our future.”
Resources Guide from Jewish Education Project
While this guide was developed in response to the tragedy at Tree of Life in Pittsburgh, the Jewish Education Project has added resources as they are created and, unfortunately, as the list of hate crimes in Jewish and other communities continues to grow.