By Rabbi Alicia Magal
Jewish Community of Sedona and the Verde Valley
(October 29, 2018)
What can be our response be to the shooting of worshippers in a Pittsburgh synagogue on a Shabbat morning? There is no place for violence, and it cannot be tolerated. We need to find some positive ways to react so that we do not remain in a numb, shocked, helpless mode with nowhere to put our feelings. We need to transform those feelings into action that is healing. Here are some positive acts people have already taken locally, and some suggestions for continuing to take a stand for solidarity:
I received extremely moving messages from several clergy leaders of Sedona churches affirming their stand against anti-Semitism, and supporting the Jewish Community of Sedona and the Verde Valley. Our synagogue leadership has always relied on the professional expertise of our local police force and continues to remain in close communication with them regarding any necessary additional security measures.
Whatever each individual can do to guide children and teens toward good life choices, to promote good relations with neighbors, to give support to local organizations that promote understanding and give assistance to people in need, can be a way to elevate the sense of belonging and responsibility among those in our wider community.
Clergy and lay people are warmly invited to attend our Friday evening service on November 2, at 7:30 p.m. when we will say a special prayer in memory of those slain, and also express our vision of hope.
All are invited to show support by attending the Interfaith Thanksgiving service on Tuesday, November 20, at 7 p.m. at the Sedona United Methodist Church at 110 Indian Cliffs Rd. to reaffirm our solid connection with people of good faith who come together to celebrate our commonalities and respect our differences.
Choose some way, a positive way, to transform what was an act of hatred into a surge of caring, consideration, and compassion.