Over the last five years, I’ve been deeply pained by the increase in division, hate and rejection occurring in our country and around the world. In recent years, the political climate, social media, 24-hour news cycles and several other factors have given rise to unchecked voices, denial of historical facts and deep divisions between people when they do not share the same point of view. Conversations occur in echo chambers and communities have stopped looking for common ground or finding the good in one another.

Common Roots of Faith

I have grown especially pained by the growing hate against the Jewish people, and the increased denial of historical facts. My personal Christian faith has its beginnings in Jewish faith. We share a common bond, are guided by several of the same core teachings and love several of the same historical figures: 

  • Abraham
  • Moses
  • Noah
  • David
  • Elijah
  • Isiah
  • Daniel
  • Esther
  • And so many others

To see the increase in antisemitism, sometimes even by fellow Christians, has left me without words and in utter disbelief. So, when a friend connected me with Mitch Chargo about his new initiative to help combat the rise in antisemitism and Holocaust denial, I jumped in whole-heartedly. I joined the IHRE’s Young Professionals Thought Leadership Panel.

Following in the Footsteps of Giants

In this life, we cannot control others. We can only control our contributions to the world. As Dr. Martin Luther King so famously said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” We must push back with love. And as Anne Frank said, “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” Every first step is a new step to creating change. 

The Institute for Holocaust Research and Education organization is a new lantern fighting back against a growing darkness, and a new effort to improve the world. As the organization works to provide information, facts and understanding, I believe that work will increase kindness, love and compassion, one person at a time. And I’m thankful to be part of the team.