April 8, 2020 - Infusing Pesach with Purpose

Office of the President

My Dear Friends,

I hope this note finds you well and safe.

The essence of the holiday of Pesach is the fundamental Jewish belief in the future.  The story that we read in the Hagaddah begins well before the Egyptian servitude and ends long after the Exodus. It starts with Abraham and concludes with Next Year in a Rebuilt Jerusalem. It is not just a story of our liberation from Egypt, but also the story of the great arc of Jewish history which bends towards redemption. In this context, each of us has a much larger purpose that far transcends our own years. To transmit our values to the next generation, bring goodness and godliness into the world, and push history forward.

It is this belief in the future and in the next generation that animates everything we are doing at YU. We educate the leaders of the world of tomorrow. This has always been important but has a particularly deep resonance today. The fragility of life has perhaps never more been on public display than this period in time and the sense that there has to be something more to our existence than our fleeting years is particular pronounced. On Pesach we connect our past with our future, infusing our present with meaning and purpose. Even if not physically present, our parents and grandparents are with us on the night of Pesach as we transmit their tunes, traditions and stories to our children and grandchildren.

In honor of our parents, grandparents and all generations who have come before us, I share with you this holiday message below to celebrate our students, our community and our future.


Le-Shanah ha-Zot bi-Yerushalayim ha-Benuyah. 

Chag Sameach, 

Ari Berman