Parkland HS Memorial

March 20, 2018 | By

Dear Shulamith Family,

This morning was a powerful one as we commemorated the victims of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

In the wake of senseless crime and tragedy, we find that we are often shaken with a feeling of helplessness.  While we recognize that we are not able to fix the challenges that face our country at the moment, we are not free to ignore the pain of those that lost their loved ones.

We believe, that there are moments like these that we are called upon to react.  The students of Parkland, Florida were high school teens.  Yet, they will not have the opportunity to sign their HS yearbooks, laugh in their student lounge or attend their HS graduation.  While so much may divide us, it is important for us to find the common thread of humanity that connects us. The survivors of Parkland High School asked teenagers around the world to care.  And so, we did.

טוֹב לָלֶכֶת אֶל-בֵּית-אֵבֶל, מִלֶּכֶת אֶל-בֵּית מִשְׁתֶּה–בַּאֲשֶׁר, הוּא סוֹף כָּל-הָאָדָם; וְהַחַי, יִתֵּן אֶל-לִבּוֹ


For thousands of years, we as Jews respond to pain with our tefillot, emunah, and commitment to kindness and Jewish purpose.  While the light of others was tragically extinguished, we must remind ourselves of our responsibility to light up the world, to be mekadesh shem shamayim with the power of our middot, empathy and chessed.

One student noted, “Kindness, empathy, and peace are the core of our Torah values.”

The student- led memorial was profound.  One by one, 17 SHS students stood to honor each of the victims.

17 minutes.
Is one minute enough to commemorate a life?

“We should never take a day of life for granted.  We must carry their inspiration and hopes into our lives”

וְאַתֶּם תִּהְיוּ לִי מַמְלֶכֶת כֹּהֲנִים וְגוֹי קָדוֹשׁ

“How can we be leaders if we don’t stop to see others?”

The girls sang the poetic words together,
“כָּל הָעוֹלָם כֻּלוּ גֶשֶׁר צַר מְּאֹד וְהָעִיקָר לאֹ לְפַחֵד כְּלַל”

We must always know to put our trust in Hashem.

The program closed with tehillim and our tefillot for the peace and safety for the United States of America.
May we be zoche to share smachot together.

Filed in: Civics

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