We are devastated that once again a violent act of bigotry and hatred has been perpetrated against people gathering to pray in a house of worship. We are heartbroken that once again a Jewish synagogue has been desecrated and human life taken by an anti-Semitic gunman. Our prayers are with the victims and their families and the entire community of Chabad of Poway in southern California.
How many of these senseless acts must take place before we take action to delegitimize anti-Semitism, white supremacy and other forms of bigotry? When events such as this latest shooting occur, it is not uncommon to experience feelings of fear, powerlessness and vulnerability. Yet, we must not allow those who espouse hate to be victorious. “Never again” is a lesson we learned from the atrocities of the Shoah. This week especially, as we observe Yom Hashoah, and remember and honor those who lost their lives in the Holocaust, we must also remember that Am Yisrael Chai, the Jewish people live. We live on by remembering lessons and sharing stories of our past. This evening our community will come together to observe Yom Hashoah by bearing witness to the story of Fred Gross and his family’s story of survival. Please plan to attend.
Rabbi Sandra Bellush