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Our  Clergy's Thoughts

10/28/2019 02:34:21 PM

Oct28

Friends,

It's breathtaking to think that the worst national disaster of the 21st Century occurred 18 years ago today. Like those who experienced the bombing of Pearl Harbor or the assassinations of President Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr., September 11, 2001, is etched in our collective memories. Those of us old enough to remember that September Tuesday morning in 2001 can recite moment to moment exactly where we were, what we were doing, and how we responded on that fateful day. 

On this 18th anniversary of 9/11, we share the poignant words of Rabbi Ethan Prosnit: 

"On this 18th anniversary of 9/11, on this 11th day of Elul 5779, may the blast of the shofar serve as a sharp reminder of each of the 2,973 lives that were taken that day. May the shofar's sound echo like the sirens of the firefighters, police offices and first responders whose actions and sacrifice on 9/11 were extraordinary. May the shofar's blast help us appreciate the fragility of life.

"On this 18th anniversary of 9/11, on this 11th day of Elul 5779, may the blast of the shofar serve as an alarm to us. May its sound remind us of our missteps this past year -- our biases, our prejudices, our own actions that may have made this world a less peaceful and tolerant place. May the shofar call us to heed our best instincts and act with compassion and love.

"On this 18th anniversary of 9/11, on this 11th day of Elul 5779, may the blast of the shofar serve as a sound of comfort to all. To those wounded who continue to recover; to those who lost loved ones and friends; and to all whose hearts were broken by witnessing the pain of others.

"May the sound of the shofar on this 11th day of Elul help us reflect on how our world has changed in the past 18 years and how it has remained the same. And let each of us individually and communally recommit ourselves to again make our world whole." Adapted from Rabbi Ethan Prosnit

The number 18 has special significance for us Jews. Eighteen is the numeric value of the word chai, life. Life is a sacred value filled with hope, memory, joy and sorrow. As we commemorate the 18th anniversary of that tragic day, and as we move into the New Year 5780, let's commit to a life of holiness, hope for the future, and remembrance of the lives taken from us. 

Kein y'hi ratzon, May this be God's will.

Sun, December 15 2019 17 Kislev 5780