For thousands of years, the Jewish people had nowhere to go. Our people were persecuted and homeless. There was no haven. Then a miracle happened. Israel happened. Israel is the haven and the homeland for Jews everywhere. It is the oasis of freedom and democracy in a troubled world. I feel such pride in belonging to the Jewish people.

Israel has enriched my life just by being there. I have had the privilege of going to Israel many times over my life, and every time I visit, I come away energized and committed to help make Israel a better place.

Steve Selig

We need to advocate for Israel so that all those who live there can live with the dignity they deserve and the comfort and care they deserve. Israel is like our home, a place where we can love and dream and teach and lead. A place where we can touch people’s lives and make a difference, even as they are touching ours.

When I am in Israel, I feel like I’m with my family. A family that is diverse and exotic. A family that has come from so many places, yet with the same thread of history running through us.

It’s a democratic country with such a strong military that we, the Jewish people, can proudly say to the rest of the world, “Never again!”

See all the reflections on Israel’s meaning on this special anniversary.