As members of NFTY, we know so personally what it means to grow up in a synagogue. We’ve sung Oseh Shalom on a Friday night, swaying back and forth with our arms around new friends; we’ve danced at late-night Saturday night socials in temple social halls; we’ve slept curled up in sleeping bags at youth group shul-ins; we’ve read the Torah for the first time with shaky knees and wobbly voices at our home congregations.
Our temples are our homes. They’re our safe places when the rest of the world becomes filled with violence and hate.
The senseless act of hate at Tree of Life Congregation breaks our hearts. We are devastated for our family and friends in Pennsylvania and can’t believe that we find ourselves facing yet another act of gun violence in our country. Once again, we must remind ourselves of our own resilience and strength. Even in the face of seemingly-insurmountable tragedy, we know that we can make our world a better, safer place for all of its people. If anyone’s going to do it, NFTY, it’s going to be us.
The future is ours to improve. Now is the time to show up.
Here are some resources to do just that:
- Show up with the Reform and Conservative Jewish movements in an online gathering where we’ll sing, pray, and show the world that we are united in the face of hate.
- Show up in your congregation this weekend and join all the North American Jewish denominations in celebrating #SolidarityShabbat. Share this post on Facebook.
- Show up with NFTY and URJ camps. We’re gathering this weekend in California, Texas, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and more. Being in community is powerful. Find yours with us.
- Show up at the ballot box. Voting is the most powerful tool you have to make change. Get started this weekend with Get Out the Vote Shabbat. Not old enough to vote yet? Participate in our action alerts and share with the adults in your life.
- Show up at NFTY Convention. Registration is NOW OPEN! Join the largest gathering of Reform Jewish teens and be part of something, stand for something, and shape your community.
Looking for resources, songs, or support for coping after this tragedy? Check out this article from the URJ.
And, as always, we’re here for you. As the North American Board, we are here to help you however we can. Your activism matters. Your voice matters. We will do everything in our power to amplify it – all you have to do is ask.
This NFTY community will always be here for you, through celebration and heartbreak.
With all of our love,
The NFTY North American Board, 5778-5779