Nourish our young people with faith; Faiths IN OUR CITY.
I OFTEN think of my grandfather, who came to this country as a teenager, leaving behind his life in Europe.
He brought nothing more than a couple of pennies and few basic skills. He knew how to cut hair and taught himself how to lay tiles. But he still managed to raise a family and support them.
Let's look at what we give our children - not only the academic skills we feel are needed to be successful, but also the experiences we deem worthy for them to be worldly and open minded.
Yet within this highly qualified and sophisticated world, there still exists a high unemployment rate and of those who are employed many of them are doing something completely different to what they majored in whilst at university.
We are giving our children everything but the main ingredient of life: faith.
This week the Jewish community will have celebrated the festival of Passover, during which family and friends sit down together at a meal known as the Seder where we marked the exodus from Egypt.
We acknowledge G-d's hand in the redemption of the Jews and we gave our thanks realising that had G-d not redeemed our ancestors from Egypt then we and our children would have still been slaves today.
We sit down at the Seder, drink the four cups of wine and eat three pieces of Matzah, the bread of affliction, the bread of the poor man.
When the Hebrews left Egypt they went with their minimal belongings, they baked some bread for the journey, placed it on their backs to bake and because it didn't rise, it became Matzah instead.
They were leaving on a major journey, they had three days warning to prepare themselves, they knew it would be 40 years of wandering in the desert until they would arrive at their final destination of Israel, and all they took with them was some bread for the first part of their journey and this is why it's called the bread of faith. Because it was with this meager bread that our ancestors left Egypt, they did not know what lay ahead, but what they knew was that G-d would provide. So with Matzah and faith they left Egypt.
Although Passover is celebrated by the Jews, its lesson is one for all mankind - to realise that ultimately everything we do depends on the grace of G-d. Each year on Passover we remind ourselves that we can make all the plans, we can make the channels and open up the paths but at the end of the day it is G-d almighty that provides and decides.