For the sixth consecutive year, Baltimore Jews will join one million of their brethren in more than 100 countries for the annual international Shabbat Project. The event will be held from Nov. 15-16.

The Baltimore Shabbat Project’s stated mission is “to unite Jewish Baltimore in global solidarity through the celebration of Shabbat, respecting every member of our community and creating a true celebration of Jewish unity.”

This year’s local organizers decided to decentralize the program and encourage synagogues and Jewish schools throughout the Baltimore metropolitan area to conduct programming.

Scheduled programs include panel discussions, guest speakers, chesed projects, oneg Shabbat celebrations, classes, retreats, workshops and challah-baking projects.

In particular, Baltimore will coordinate two initiatives:

#ShareTheLight encourages women to give Shabbat candles to neighbors and establish a pre-Shabbat “partner” to encourage the mitzvah, or experience Havdalah together with a new friend or neighbor;

#ReachOutAndConnect encourages people to call five others and text five others to wish them a Shabbat Shalom; also, to invite one or two people (or a family) to share home hospitality and a Shabbat meal.

In addition, more than 20 local schools and youth organizations will send 1,000 Shabbat kits to Israeli soldiers by Nov. 15 as part of the #ShareTheLight initiative, and deliver over 1,300 Shabbat Shalom cards to local senior citizens on Nov. 15 as part of the #ReachOutandConnect initiative.

The Jewish Federation of Howard County will host its fifth annual Great Challah Bake on Dec. 5 as part the International Shabbat Project. More than 200 women and girls are expected to come together to make challah at Kahler Hall in Columbia. (For information, visit JewishHowardCounty.org/ChallahBake.)

This year’s International Shabbat Project calls on Jews all over the world to “jump together” in response to rising levels of violent anti-Semitism in the United States and around the world.

“It’s time for the Jewish world to jump together,” said South African Chief Rabbi Dr. Warren Goldstein, founder and director of the Shabbat Project. “To recommit to our heritage, to the grand idea of what it means to be a Jew — and to find our way forward to a future filled with inspiration and determination, a future that will see us defeat those who seek to destroy our values. When we do that, we move the world.”

For information, email info@baltimoreshabbatproject.org. For a full listing of events, visit baltimoreshabbatproject.org.

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