April 29, 2019

My Dear TSS Family,

Yet again, we become a community of mourners, bound by the deaths of Lori Kaye, shot during Shabbat and Pesach services at the Chabad Center in Poway, California. Sacred space was shattered by the renewal of violent acts of Anti-Semitism. Sadly, acts of Anti-Semitism have risen in the past two years in this world's climate of pervasive hatred and intolerance. 

I know that many of you need to talk and share your feelings. My office doors, as well as Cantor Rosenman's are always open and we are here to listen. As it happens, Wednesday night is HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day which we will be marking this Shabbat evening. Please join us for our 7:30 Friday night service as we listen to the memories of a child of the Shoah, and mark the death of 6 million Jews through readings and song. Together we will face the Anti-Semitism of the past and the present.

I have been thinking about the fact that this attack occurred on the last day of Pesach, our festival of freedom. Although God played a role in freeing us from Egyptian slavery, without Moses, Miriam, Aaron, and Nachshon we would not have walked through the waters. Pesach reminds us that we need to act in our own destiny. Anti-Semitism takes place in many ways. We need to learn to call it out while condemning hatred of every form. There are Bills in the senate regulating the action of White Supremacy groups. Please call our Senators and Congress people and make our voices heard.

We have continued to make sure that Temple Sha'arey Shalom is a safe place for us to pray with the help of the Security Committee, homeland security and the Springfield Police Department.

We said at the end of our Sedarim, "next year in Jerusalem". I would like to add, next year may we be completely free of acts of Anti-Semitism and may this world pass legislature against AK-15's, which have been used in too many actions of those who hate. Let us believe with all of our hearts that love wins and hatred is buried again.

Rabbi Renee Edelman

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