BBYO is an incredible organization, especially with how many teens we span across how many continents and countries. Reaching over 50 countries with over 35 regions, there are Jewish teens everywhere that foster similar values and core principles through being a member of BBYO.
A few weeks ago, my chapter in Charlotte, North Carolina, and our sister chapter hosted a globalization program. This program opened my eyes to how important it is to have regular programming on the basis of globalization. During the program, led by the Gizborit of each chapter (Eliana Harr, Ohavim BBG #418, and Emma Sherrill, Chai Chaverim BBG #1548-552), we watched a video of people from different BBYO communities around the world talk about the different Jewish traditions they have. The reason that this was so stunning and powerful to me was that although there were some small, minuscule differences, everyone’s Jewish traditions and customs were pretty much the same.
Although this is a common theme throughout Judaism, that Jewish people are practicing similarly all around the world. It is definitely hard to visualize that someone all the way in Ukraine is celebrating Shabbat the same way I usually am. This is why it is so important to have regular programs about globalization. It is easier to visualize our global connections when there is a face to the country. This is so important to emphasize through programming. It made my connection feel stronger to both Judaism and people from all over the world. Other members of BBYO need to feel this, as well. It is a powerful feeling.
Now, whenever I celebrate any holiday or practice a Jewish custom, I can remember that in Latin America, the UK, China, Ukraine, and everywhere else in the world, there are people practicing alongside me, even if it isn’t physically.
Madison Harr is a BBG from Ohavim BBG #418, and she has a dog named after Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.
All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.
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