2017 will mark two nominal firsts for the World Congress: we will hold and sponsor two major international conferences instead of one. We have also launched an ambitious project of publishing a book to leave a legacy for the future generations of LGBT Jews and allies.
The World Congress’s book initiative is detailed here by Michael Lacher,our project manager. This book gives all our members and friends the opportunity to introduce themselves worldwide, share their practices, and work together towards a better future for our communities. As of today, 15 high profile activists, intellectuals, religious or lay leaders have written articles for this book. This wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of three special individuals who have committed significant funds towards this project. We welcome your assistance on this book project. Each and every contributor, sponsor, and donor is thanked for their commitment to this good cause.
After the success of the Shabbaton and conference hosted by our members from JAG in Buenos Aires last March, Beit Haverim will celebrate its 40th anniversary, from September 7th to September 10th, by hosting a second conference and other social events in Paris. A full guide is attached here. Close to 100 delegates from 15 countries are expected to attend the four 2-hour panel sessions from Friday to Sunday. A dozen speakers coming from a myriad of countries will be attending: prominent religious, sociopolitical leaders, sociologists, journalists and sexologists. Additionally, there will be time for the World Congress’ delegates to meet and discuss important issues regarding our book and our communication. As usual, the organizers have managed to make room for touristic and recreational activities to highlight the beauty of the City of Light.
To me personally, this conference means a whole lot. This is the first time I am actively working with Beit Haverim as the President of The World Congress and not any more as a director (President and then Spokesperson) of our French organization. It is with great emotion that I would like to congratulate my former colleagues and devoted organizers of today’s conference: Alain, Carole and so many other volunteers. I am also very grateful to the prominent elected officials – members of the French parliament, Mayors and members of municipal councils – whom I have always witnessed supporting our cause; they make us the honor to attend and speak. It is a special pleasure to see over the past 20 years how tremendously Beit Haverim has increased its communication and visibility. Last but not least, symbolically, this 40th anniversary takes place almost 10 years after we found “La Maison du Beit”, the home Beit Haverim owns in Paris thanks to the generosity of 100 donors.
We thank you again for accompanying us for this event. We are delighted to welcome you all and we trust you will enjoy your time and all the food – for thought and for fun.