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On Wednesday, March 22nd, the Bahai World Center celebrated Naw-Ruz (the New Year) with an evening designed to gracefully bridge the past, present and future. Diplomats, leading business and community leaders, and members of the Bahai community from across the globe were hosted by Bahai Representatives Mr. Joshua Lincoln ,Mr and Mrs Kern and Barbara Wisman and Mrs Sarah Vader at a festive event held at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. This special gathering provided an ideal forum to highlight Bahai values, Bahai-Israeli ties, and Bahai engagement with many other faith communities.

Guests first passed through a serene meditative space created by the artistic arrangement of greenery, colorful flowers, and earth-toned stones. We later learned that volunteers had been toiling since before daybreak to prepare this exquisite indoor mini-garden. The gentle sound of trickling water from a fountain in the center soothed and relaxed attendees as they approached the inviting main meeting area.

Just inside the door, the reception committee greeted each guest with a broad smile, a warm handshake and a request to enter and enjoy. On a podium at the front, a string quartet was quietly presenting a pleasant backdrop to the lively socializing as old friends eager to share updates chatted amiably while first-time acquaintances introduced themselves and initiated new relationships. As everyone mingled, wait staff circulated continuously, offering a delectable selection of gourmet hor d’oeuvres while a dozen buffet tables held culinary delights for every palate; including expertly-prepared fish, chicken, meats and grilled vegetables, many salads and crudites, fresh fruits and tempting desserts.

 

 

 

Although the Bahai World Center is based in Haifa, Jerusalem, whose very name means “the city of Peace”, was a particularly meaningful setting for a program dedicated to the ideals of harmony and fellowship. Sarah Vader, Deputy Secretary of the Bahai International Community Secretariat, opened the evening and welcomed the distinguished guests in Hebrew. Switching to English, she continued a tone of warmth and camaraderie with heartfelt words of appreciation for Ken and his wife Barbara whose devotion to serving others was tireless throughout the past 18 years.

Following Ms.Vader, Secretary General Joshua Lincoln addressed the guests. His insightful remarks highlighted the themes of hope, joy and renewal that are central to Naw-Ruz and the spring season. He then expressed his gratitude and appreciation to all those who have joined in friendship and continuously work to spread good will among the diverse communities in Israel.
Looking to the future, he introduced the incoming Representative, Mr. David Friedman and his wife Tracy who will be joining the BWC in the summer. After mentioning several major anniversaries that the Bahai are looking forward to in the next few years, Mr. Lincoln segued into an introduction of the featured speaker, Israeli Supreme Court Justice Salim Jubran, a vocal advocate for coexistence.

Justice Jubran fondly recalled his personal connection to the Bahai community over the years, a natural result of living near their holy places, both as a youth growing up in Akko close to the shrine of Baha’ulla and now, too, as his current home in Haifa is near the shrine of the Bab and its beautiful gardens. He expressed admiration for the Bahai faith’s emphasis on equality, unity and commitment to expressing spiritual development through active engagement with one’s neighbors. Applauding the “kind and noble conduct” which follows from their deep appreciation of diversity, he concluded by drawing a parallel between the Bahai World Center’s mission and that of the judicial system from which he will soon be retiring; both are committed to maintaining the freedom of religion and multiculturalism so integral to Israel’s raison d’etre.

 

 

All of the speakers expressed their convictions that no matter where we are from and what we believe, people are more alike than different; by focusing on our shared humanity, each of us can reach out to others in a spirit of respect and cooperation. Past and present achievements demonstrate that by working together cooperatively, we can create a future better suited to accomplish our common purpose and increase justice, tolerance and peace throughout the world. These concepts were interwoven and expressed musically during the finale; four singers, a guitarist and pianist, each from a different country, stirred listeners with their performance of “The Seasons of Love”. The harmony, both musical and social, of the recently-formed group and the touching lyrics together aptly symbolized that building relationships with others is one of the most rewarding and joyful experiences possible.

After these meaningful and hope-filled presentations, those present continued to enjoy the buffet and converse freely. Guests included Emi Palmon, the Director General of the Ministry of Justice, the Ambassadors of Mexico, Namibia, South Africa, former Israel Ambassadors to several nations, leaders of the many local faith communities, as well as directors of multi-faith projects and founders, such as Dr. Iris Truman who is spearheading an effort to create an international court for resolving business and economic matters,of several new global initiatives

www.diplomacy.co.il wishes the global Bahai community and all those who celebrate Naw-Ruz a year of health, happiness and much success

Written by  Leslie Sachs        

Photos By  Silvia G. Golan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Over 60 leading women from across the world joined together last month for a panel discussion showcasing Israeli females in the lead.
Organized by The Israel Project (TIP) and the Embassy of Cyprus in Israel, the event served as a platform to discuss and understand the challenges and opportunities facing women in Israeli society in the modern age.
Among the panelists were popular journalist Judy Shalom Nir-Mozes. Former IDF commander Miri Eisin and Israeli Olympic athlete Maayan Davidovich.

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, today (Thursday, 15 June 2017), in Thessaloniki, at the third trilateral summit, signed joint statements for the continued strengthening of relations.

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A senior delegation from Tanzania, headed by Dr. Aloyce Nzuki, Permanent Secretary Ministry for Natural Resources and Tourism, arrived in Israel for a series of meetings and events designed to increase cooperation with the Israeli tourist industry, and encourage Israeli tourism and investments to enchanted, exotic Tanzania.

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At a festive ceremony attended by Minister of Education Naftali Bennett, the Lauder Dormitory Building was inaugurated today at the Technion
state of the art building was donated to the Technion by World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder and his wife Jo Carole

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09 June 2017 – Jerusalem) The U.S. Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations Nikki Haley visited Yad Vashem today. The Ambassador was guided through the Holocaust History Museum by Dr. Robert Rozett, Director of Yad Vashem Libraries, participated in a memorial ceremony in the Hall of Remembrance, visited the Children's Memorial and signed the Yad Vashem Guest Book.

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On Wednesday evening, June 7th, the Embassy of Slovenia in Tel Aviv celebrated 26 years of independence, and 25 years of bilateral relations with Israel. The commemoration was held at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation in Jaffa. The event was timed to coincide with visits by both the Minister of Education, Science and Sport Dr. Maja Makovec Brencic, and a high-level parliamentary delegation led by National Assembly President Dr. Milan Brglez.

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President Reuven Rivlin today (Wednesday) met at his residence in Jerusalem with United States Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Nikki R. Haley.

President Rivlin welcomed her and said, “You are a dear friend of Israel. We appreciate your strong stand on the world’s most important stage, in support of the security of the people and the State of Israel. With your support we see the beginning of a new era. Israel is no longer alone at the UN. Israel is no longer the UN’s punching bag.”

He continued, “When I spoke at the UN on Holocaust Memorial Day, I said that the UN must learn from the lessons of the past, and stand up against hatred and racism. I said it must end its obsession with targeting Israel. Progress has been made. Israel’s standing at the UN has improved. But sadly, we have a long way to go. Both in holding to account, public statements made by officials, and in supporting regulation to reduce the ridiculous number of discussions and resolutions against Israel. This is also true in the Human Rights Council - which has been hijacked as a weapon against Israel - and in UNESCO, where they seek to rub out the history of the Jewish people.”

The President thanked the Ambassador for her great contribution to the State of Israel, and said, “Ambassador Haley, as the representative the US - Israel’s greatest and strongest ally - we appreciate very much your support of Israel, and all you do to stand up for the values of freedom and democracy which we share. Welcome to Israel, welcome to Jerusalem.”

Ambassador Haley thanked the President for his warm welcome and said, “Thank you Mr. President for taking the time to meet with us, it is an absolute thrill to be here in Israel, I so much appreciate the support we have received from the people of Israel. But I feel somewhat guilty because all I did at the United Nations was tell the truth. I have never taken kindly to bullies, and the UN has bullied Israel for a very long time, and we are not going to let that happen anymore. It is a new day for Israel in the United Nations. We just got back from Geneva, talking about the Human Rights Council and hopefully it will be a new day at the Human Rights Council when it comes to Israel.”

She concluded by saying she was greatly looking forward to her visit to Israel and said, “I am looking forward to taking in the history, the beauty, the tradition, and all that comes with the magic of Israel. Thank you very much for having me it is a pleasure to be here.”

Photo credit: Mark Neiman (GPO)

Friday was a beautiful late spring day; the gardens were lovely, the weather was fine; the guests were elegantly attired; the refreshments were generous and delicious; all the makings of a happy celebration marking the National Day of Sweden. H.E. Carl Magnus Nesser, ambassador of Sweden to the State of Israel, hosted the event at the ambassadorial residence in Herzlia Pituach.

The event was attended by many Swedish nationals living in Israel; Swedish music, Swedish food, Swedish sponsors and a generous open bar – all the makings of a happy event.

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A fundamentally agricultural holiday, Shavuot commemorates the custom of bringing offerings to the Holy Temple from the first fruits of the harvest and the first animals born to the flocks.

Shavuot, the Holiday of Weeks, is one of the three pilgrimage holidays, along with Pesach and Sukkot. These are the holidays on which the whole Jewish people would come to Jerusalem​ in ancient times, when the Holy Temple was there, and would offer animal and grain sacrifices.

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Tel Aviv Eat presents three evenings of tastings and workshops featuring the region’s leading restaurants and most prominent chefs. Entrance is free (including the chefs’ demonstrations), and tasting portions range in price from NIS 20-35. Doors open each evening at 18.00. There are several performance stages, live music, and stands selling beer.

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"Only when we remember the families who were torn apart from everyone they loved, who suffered that terrible darkness and evil, who had endured the unbearable horror of the Holocaust, only then can we prevent this agony from ever repeating." President Donald J. Trump

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The Charles Bronfman Auditorium at Habima Square is one of the centerpieces of the Israeli arts and cultural scene, home to the Israel Philharmonic for the last 60 years. On Friday, May 19th, it was home to yet another historic event, with the dedication of the entrance hall to Miri Shitrit of blessed memory.

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President Reuven and First Lady Nechama Rivlin today, (Monday), welcomed President of the United States Donald J. Trump, and First Lady Melania Trump on arrival at Ben-Gurion International Airport, and then at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem.

On his arrival at the President’s Residence, President Trump signed the official guest book and wrote, “It is such a great honor to be in Israel and be with all of my great friends”.

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  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, today (Monday, 22 May 2017), at Ben-Gurion International Airport, welcomed US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania with an honor guard.

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President Reuven Rivlin on Tuesday , at a ceremony at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, received the diplomatic credentials of the new Ambassadors to Israel from Thailand and Spain. Each ceremony began with the raising of the flag and the playing of the national anthem of the visiting country, and - after the presentation of the credentials - the signing of the guest book, before the playing of Israel's national anthem 'Hatikva'.

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