I have been watching the news, like so many, and seeing all the images of how hurricanes Harvey and Irma have caused so much destruction & damage to the residents of Texas and Florida and how so many people are suffering terribly. What I have also been seeing is how so many have come together to help…neighbors helping neighbors…Regardless of background, ethnicity, religion or race, the people of Texas and Florida and the whole country have shown what humanity and Chesed truly are.
I am very moved by the Jewish community’s reaction and ACTION in helping those in need and who are in distress. Although we have not seen much on the news, I have heard from many of my friends and family across the country and from reading the Jewish news that from Coast to Coast, Jewish communities and organizations have come together in an effort to help residents in Texas and Florida get through the devastation. Jewish communities and organizations across the country are holding food drives and fundraising drives. There are many volunteers across the country who have been loading trucks with supplies and food and heading to the areas affected. Many Jewish families have opened up their homes to those either who were evacuated or who cannot go back to their homes. I heard that kosher food companies have donated truckloads of food. Synagogues and other Jewish organizations helped Texas and Florida residents find food, shelter and religious services, as the storms battered their homes and neighborhoods.
Actually, as I was writing this article I received an email about one of my dear colleagues and friends who is a Cantor in Houston. I just learned that he was terribly impacted by Hurricane Harvey. He lost his home and everything in it and he is in need of almost everything, from clothing to rebuilding his house. He also lost his Cantorial book collection, which we are trying to help him replenish. The “Cantors” community is trying to help him in any way we can.
We can see how important Chesed is and I am so proud that we at HHBJC have such a wonderful Chesed Committee and Congregational Nurse Program who are ALWAYS THERE TO HELP!
May Hashem bless those who are suffering from the wrath of Harvey and Irma get back on their feet and the ability to feel safe and secure again and may Hashem bless all the Volunteers, Emergency & Rescue services, Organizations, and all those who are helping in any way; with the strength to continue their acts of Chesed, Tzedaka, heroism, kindness, compassion & generosity.
Let us all pray for a year of good health, peace, safety & love. Shana Tova!
See you in Shul.
Cantor Sol Zim