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April 13, 2021 9:08 am

Delegation of American Jewish Leaders to Visit Israel in First Post-Pandemic Travel

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Worshipers pray in distance from each other at the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City, amid coronavirus restrictions, March 26, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Ammar Awad. – The Religious Zionists of America-Mizrachi announced a leadership delegation visit to Israel in late May, designed to be the first organized group of Jewish communal leadership to visit Israel since the coronavirus pandemic brought travel to a halt. The delegation is geared to send a message to American Jews that when they are comfortable traveling again, Israel should be their first destination.

“As more Americans are getting vaccinated and contemplating travel, we wanted to send a strong message to the Jewish community that instead of visiting Dubai, the Caribbean or some other exotic place, your priority should be to get back to Israel,” said RZA Executive Vice President Rabbi Ari Rockoff. “The startup nation has now also become the vaccination nation! As Israel relaxes its travel restrictions, we wanted to be the first organized trip back home.”

Aptly dubbed “A Journey Home,” the delegation will travel to Israel from May 26-31, during Memorial Day weekend in the United States.

The group will be limited to 50 participants. They are slated to be briefed by Israel’s political and rabbinical leadership; meet with top physicians on Israel’s battle against COVID-19; hear from business leaders who innovated during the last year to reach new audiences; and learn from NGO leaders on their work helping to alleviate the economic and social consequences caused by the pandemic.

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They will tour new Religious Zionist communities; dine with soldiers guarding Israel’s borders; and visit religious and other sites.

The trip will also feature a Shabbaton with the group’s worldwide leadership, as well as Orthodox Israel Coalition delegates currently leading Israeli national institutions. It will close with a musical concert and the opportunity for attendees to spend time with family and friends.

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