on Tuesday, 11 September 2012. Posted in Community Events
My friends, my brothers and sisters,
The greatest challenge for any person of faith is this: how do I take good from evil?
Eleven years ago today we were confronted with that question and the stark reality that our beloved America is no island, exempt from the terror and tragedy of this turbulent world around us. We learned that we are all in this together, a mere polyglot array of passengers on this fragile ship in which we sail the seas of faith and fate.
In Jewish tradition we are close to the beginning of the New Year, Rosh HaShanah which begins Sunday night. On Rosh HaShanah and again on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, we will chant and read the prayer BeRosh HaShanah yikatevun uvyom tzom Kippur yechateimun, on the day of judgment it is written and on the Day of Atonement it is sealed, who will live and who will die, who by fire and who by water, who by sword and who by falling, who in the fullness of time and who before their time.
At 9/11 we found that each of us, of all backgrounds, in every country, face the same risk and can share the same tragic end. None of us truly knows his or her own fate. And we learned that while we are all different in this essential fact we are all the same. We are all part of one race: the human race. We are all part of one faith: faith in the good that can come of human beings working together, and worshipping together, in our own words and with our own songs.
If there is good that has come out of the evil of 9/11 it is this: that we now are sure that we must come to know each other better, that we must learn from each other, that we must respect each other, that we must learn to love each other, with all our differences, for all our differences.
May we take this lesson into our hearts, and our souls, and then into our homes and our houses of worship and into every part of our lives—at this time, and at all times.
May this be God's will. And, most importantly, may this be our will.