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Social Justice Committee

Two initiatives of the Social Justice Committee are coming to fruition in January:  The annual MLK Shabbat will be held January 14, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. And,  in response to the Afghan refugee crisis, we are creating a Welcome Circle to resettle a family in our area in January or February, continuing the long PJTC tradition of taking in and caring for the stranger.

The Annual Martin Luther King Day Shabbat is jointly sponsored by SJC and Sisterhood and represents a collaboration that we know will be an on-going feature of many activities and programs as we implement the new PJTC strategic plan. Unfortunately, the originally planned performance by Urban Voices is also canceled due to the continued challenges of COVID-19. However, the rest of our programming remains on the program, including celebrating the recipient of the second annual Rabbi Marvin Gross Social Justice Award, Debby Singer.

The outstanding roster of nominees for this recognition is testament to the longstanding and deep commitment to social justice of so many in our community. Debby infuses her temple and community activities with the empathy and understanding at the heart of the Jewish vision of justice.  Members of the selection committee saw a strong resonance with Rabbi Gross’ spirit in her dedication to restoring the lives of the unhoused and at risk . And, like Rabbi Gross, she quietly inspires others to reach into themselves to find ways to live the mission that guides the Social Justice Committee: “to respond to societal conditions and contemporary issues based on traditional Jewish values and the prophetic admonition--Tzedek, tzedek tirdofe, Justice, justice shall you pursue.”

Our PJTC Welcome Circle, under the auspices of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society  (HIAS), will find and fund housing for a family of four,  help orient and socialize the family to life in this very different environment, and meet many of the needs of adults and children that arise  as they navigate their new lives. At this point we welcome volunteers, either as core members of the Circle or as occasional volunteers, especially those with social work and immigration law backgrounds.

There is no formal “membership” in SJC. All PJTC members are welcome.  To be included in our mailings, contact Next meetings (10:00 a.m. by zoom): January 16, January 30; February 13 and February 20. Zoom at:

Please note:

URGENTLY NEEDED: AFFORDABLE TEMPORARY OR PERMANENT HOUSING FOR AFGHAN REFUGEE FAMILY in Pasadena area or environs, starting Feb or March 2022. 1BR ok for temporary, 2BR for permanent. Rent guaranteed for 6 months. Family sponsored by PJTC HIAS Welcome Circle. Any leads? Please contact Carl at or Susan at

by Carl Selkin
Committee Member Social Justice Community

Thu, January 20 2022 18 Shevat 5782