This past Shabbat, we were again reminded of the fragility of peace and wholeness, as acts of terror rippled through the city of Paris. Throughout this weekend, the news has grown only more disheartening, as further reports of violence came from Jerusalem, Beirut, and Kenya, to name only a few. These acts of violence are reminders that we live in a broken world. As we have over the violence in our beloved Israel, and as we have over other seemingly random moments that remind us of life’s fragility, we pray for peace and for comfort. We pray that those in positions of leadership should act with both justice and compassion, and we pray that the pursuit of peace drives them. For all those touched by these acts of violence, we pray that they and their loved ones find comfort and solace in these immediate days after.
Comfort and solace are hopes we have for people affected by the events in the news as of late, and they are also hopes that we offer to many within our own congregation. Many have noticed over the past few months that we have been going through a period of loss in our community, for Hevreh and for the South County community. Some deaths have been expected, and others sudden and too soon. None of these can be compared; we mourn with you the loss of each and every soul who has been a part of our sacred community. Recently, the Lenox community mourned the tragic loss of college freshman Michael Hedges, who was killed by a drunk driver. We know that there are those in the Hevreh who were touched by this loss. Please know that we are here, if you would like to talk.
Perhaps you’re familiar with the adage “Life is what happens while we’re making other plans.” We, as your clergy, are constantly aware of this. After all, we are blessed to be with all of you in different lifecycle moments. It is our role as the clergy of this community to help mark and help make sacred all sorts of occasions, both planned and unexpected. Your rabbis are here to be with you, for all that happens in our lives and in our community.
As we were reminded this past Shabbat, Hevreh is a community that delights in joyous worship and unique communal events. We are more than a Jewish community center. We are a kehilah kedoshah, a sacred community. That means that we are there no matter what’s going on in one’s life. We celebrate life’s heights together, and we travel through life’s valleys together. We are here to experience profound joy, and we are here to hold you and your families in times of illness and in times of loss.
If there is ever anything going on, and you would like to talk, please let us know.