Campaign Update - Fourth of July Edition (a day early) - July 3, 2014

As I sit here preparing to write my weekly “Campaign Update”, and with the events in the Middle East having ‘rocked’ our worlds this week, I find it extremely difficult to focus in on something as mundane as our Annual Campaign. Instead I find myself thinking about, not just the three Israeli teens whose bodies were found this week, nor the body of the Palestinian teen found the day after the funerals, nor the Israeli Arab boy killed by an anti-tank missile on the Syrian border 2 weeks ago, but about all the world’s children who are killed or put in harm’s way. This madness is out of control.

Last night our community gathered for a memorial service and were joined by Senator Richard Blumenthal and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro. With severe thunderstorms expected, I opted to drive home early to Stamford in hopes of (though I failed) missing the weather most foul. I am certain that more than a few people opted to stay out of the weather as well last night.  I therefore felt the need to go to morning services today at my synagogue in Norwalk and I am glad I did. We added two psalms at the end of the service, both ending with the words: Shalom al Yisrael – May there be peace for the people Israel. It gave me some comfort that we were reflecting on all the senseless deaths that have taken place.

I want to leave you with the words of my rabbi, Ron Fish: “We continue to hope for peace and stability in the other land that we love. May all those who live within her borders be blessed with God’s protection. May we see the time anticipated in this Shabbat’s Haftarah written by the prophet Micah. Were all people to follow his vision, America, Israel and the world would surely be a place of peace, reconciliation and understanding: ‘What is it I ask of you, oh Man? Only this: to act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.’”

That is my wish as we prepare to celebrate and give thanks for 238 years of American independence.

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