Chaverim Shalom,

My heart is with you all as we mourn the senseless murders at Tree of Life-Or L’Simcha Synagogue in Pittsburgh. We are but one Jewish family and this impacts us like a punch to the gut…this, the worst attack to hit our Jewish People in this Nation’s history. Eleven worlds cut down by one murderous and cowardly individual. Armed with the weapons to actualize the hatred in his heart, he has left a dark red stain on our day of rest and purity.

May God watch over the souls of those departed and provide comfort to all those who mourn. May He send swift healing to all those wounded, including the brave first responders who risked their lives to subdue this coward.

This entire day, I have held my newborn son just a little tighter than I usually do. Please hold on to those close to you with love and warmth in your hearts…Friends, family, one another. Let us treat everyone, including ourselves, with a little more compassion and tilt the cosmic balance in the right direction after such a terrible day.

Please know that our synagogue has been actively working on security protocol and we have a task-force in place to address needs and implement recommendations. A synagogue must forever be a sukkat shalom, a sanctuary of peace and security, and we always have this top of mind. Together we must now strengthen our resolve to live proudly and securely as Jews in this beautiful country of ours.

Adonai Oz l’Amo yiten…We pray that God gives His people strength…Adonai Yiverach et Amo va’Shalom. And may He bless us with peace in a world that needs it desperately.

Bivracha,

Rabbi Natan