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Tree of Life
The killings at the Pittsburgh Jewish synagogue challenges all of us to reflect. How can there be so much anti-Semitism in our nation? It would seem contradictory for any follower of Jesus, a Jew, to discriminate against their own heritage. The Tree of Life Jewish community lives out Jesus’ teachings to bring good news to the poor, to love the stranger, the refugee, the oppressed. Their hearts were filled with the compassionate Spirit of God. And for this they were targeted with hateful rhetoric before being gunned down in their house of worship.
Tree of Life members were actively giving care to immigrants, reaching out with compassion to those caravaning together from Central America seeking safety as they flee from violence and economic hardship. Many in the caravan are seeking to reunite with family, separated by authorities in the U.S. What has happened to the soul of our nation when the victims of oppression are described as violent criminals to be feared and stopped at the border with military might.
Aren’t all people of faith called to do the same as this faith filled Jewish community?
I feel so blessed to be a part of this great community for 47 years. The beautiful kind people, young and old, have been a special part of our family’s lives and this is a place we are honored to call ‘home.’
What happened to our faith and kindness? What happened to respect for all people? Where is the honesty in our world? Why do people think it’s ok to hurt others? What happened to the Golden Rule?... “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”...Matthew 7:12? (We all learned this as small children in our homes and Sunday Schools.)
This year has been a difficult campaign year, on the National and State levels, with the negativism, half-truths, disrespect and hurtful words said. Most of us are tired of all the negative ads, letters, articles slamming the other opponent, telling half-truths and putting their opponents down just to win votes. This is very hurtful not only to the candidate but to their family, friends and neighbors. This is especially true in our small community where we know and care for each other so much. We experienced all of this, first hand, in our own lives this year on our local level.
Mother Teresa once said... “For all those who make such stories which are not true, I only say God forgive all these people. I feel sorry for them because they are doing so much harm to themselves.”
She also shared... “If each of us would only sweep our own doorstep, the whole world would be clean.”
It’s amazing people like Mother Teresa who are my true heroes whom I admire and have learned from. We are very fortunate to also have amazing people in our own community who have worked very hard to help others and make our small community vibrant.
With faith, honesty, kindness and respect for each other, we all can continue to work together to make our community a better place to live.