Spotlight On... Yoni Kott and Lana Zilberman Soloway

What does "Next Year in Jerusalem" mean to you? We asked two Israelis, and here are their stories...

A Seder in Nepal

From Ayal Weiner-Kaplow:

I had the opportunity to spend much of 2015 in Nepal, including the Pesach holiday. Being so far away from home, I was able to relate differently than in the past, in a very tangible way, with elements of the story of the exodus from Egypt. I could identify with feelings of being uprooted, feelings of being separated from my home, while also feeling a great sense of excitement about what possibilities lie ahead as I wandered through my own 'desert'.

The need for community is what brings thousands of Israelis and other Jewish travelers together each Passover in Nepal. In fact, the Kathmandu Chabad is host to the largest seder in the world, gathering over 1,000 attendees! This was one of thousands of Seders happening around the same time at different cities across the world, held together by a common ritual and collective story. At the end of the Seder, by singing “Next Year in Jerusalem,” it felt like we were each personally saying, “Here’s to the year ahead of discovering my way back home, to my own 'Jerusalem'".

Chag Pesach Sameach!

A Nation of Storytellers

From Scott Frankel:

“The great leaders tell the story of the group. But the greatest of leaders, Moses, taught the group to become a nation of storytellers.”

– Rabbi Sacks, A Nation of Storytellers

I’ve been thinking a lot about memory lately. I just recently graduated from the Masters in Jewish Professional Studies program from Spertus Institute. My thesis was on the use of storytelling in education, and one of the key steps for maximizing the value of stories in meaning making is the awareness that every story first starts with an act of remembering. What do I choose to remember and why? How does memory play a role in what stories I’m telling? What’s the educational value of this all?

Growing up, every year at our Pesach Seder in Chicago, my Bubbe would say “Next Year in Jerusalem.” So in 2010, after I graduated from college, I decided to spend Pesach in Jerusalem. As my memory serves, that same Pesach I got a phone call from my Bubbe saying, “Next year in Chicago!” And now, every year at Pesach, Bubbe says to me, “This year in Chicago” and then gives me a kiss. It’s become our tradition... <Read More>

  • What do you think of when you hear "Next Year in Jerusalem"?
  • How do you create space for people to connect to the themes of Pesach through sharing stories?
  • What questions or prompts might you ask to open up the dialogue?


Spotlight On... Cari Schulman

“I said to my Zeide, לשנה הבאה בירושלים (L’shanah haba'ah b’Yerushalayim), and he asked, ‘Why do you say that?’” Watch the touching story of Cari Schulman and her Zeide.