It has come to that time in every Shlichut when we as a community have to say goodbye to someone who has been an integral part of our lives for the last two or three years.

Stav Rogel came to New Zealand as our Shlichah in April 2018 after an 18-month period without Shlichut. It is never easy coming all the way to New Zealand from Israel and even more so when by yourself.

However, it didn’t take long for Stav to begin establishing herself within the community working with the ZFNZ, Habonim Dror, Beth Shalom, Kadimah School, the BA Shlichim, Moshe House and many other community organisations throughout New Zealand.

The last two years have shown how important community Shlichut is to our community and the benefit we derive from having a dedicated full-time community worker. Stav has made both a lasting impact on our community and even more so on the lives of many young adults, youth, and children in our community. Those of us who have worked closely with Stav have always been impressed with how willing she was to do what was best for the community.

Under normal circumstances, we would have held a farewell gathering for Stav, but due to COVID 19 she has been called back by the Jewish Agency to Israel early, and will be leaving New Zealand this Sunday (22 March) to return to Israel. This way she will be able to finish her 14 days self-isolation before Pesach.

So, on behalf of the ZFNZ and all the community, we would like to say a big thank you to Stav for all she has done for the New Zealand Jewish community, and we look forward to seeing her (post Coronavirus!) either in Eretz Yisrael or back here in New Zealand.

We wish you Stav a safe journey back home to Israel and best of luck in whatever awaits you on the next part of your life adventure.

Yoms 2020
It will come as no surprise to anyone that due to the Coronavirus, we have had to cancel this years’ Yom HaShoah Tekes, Yom HaZikaron Tekes, and Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration.

Instead, we have created public but closed Facebook groups (i.e only those invited or accepted can join and post or comment) for each of these events.

The links to the pages are below:

Yom HaShoah

Yom HaZikaron 

Yom Ha’Atzmaut

For each of the above, we will post readings and videos, and ask others to do the same so as a community we can commemorate and celebrate together in a virtual environment.

More information will become available as to what each person can do, but to begin with we would ask you to light a Yahrzeit Candle or tea light on the nights of Yom HaShoah (Monday 20 April) and Yom HaZikaron (Monday 27 April) and dedicate your memorial candle to a specific individual who you either knew or was a family member or from a database of individuals who were either killed by the Nazis or their collaborators, or for Yom HaZikaron, have been killed defending the State of Israel or who were victims of terror. More information on these to follow.

In the meantime, please adhere to the Ministry of Health’s guidelines on COVID 19. Be safe, take care of loved ones and friends and may HaShem look after us all.

Rob Berg
President, Zionist Federation of New Zealand