To the Mekor Habracha Community,

The situation in Israel is dire. Hamas rocket attacks are bombarding the entire country from Gaza in unprecedented fashion. It is difficult for many of us in the US to helplessly watch this aggression perpetrated against our brethren and not know how to help.

Last night, at our annual shul member meeting, we recited prayers for the inhabitants of Israel and the soldiers of the IDF. I also shared an insight from the weekly Parsha emphasizing that we should be very concerned about the crisis, yet not become disabled because of worry; to stay productive, particularly in a Jewish sense, at this critical time.

What else can we do? Here are some suggestions culled from various Jewish organizations:

  1. Pray and study Torah. This is, first and foremost, the Jewish way of dealing with crisis. One well known source for this is Psalms 20: “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses, but [the Jewish People] call upon our God”. There is a custom to recite Psalms in times of distress: psalms 20, 83, 121,130 and 142 are generally recommended, but any psalm can be recited.

    Tradition teaches us that learning Torah is the most powerful spiritual tool we posses as Jews.

    We will be reciting special prayers and extra Torah learning in shul over Shabbat as well.

  2. Attend the Israel Solidarity Rally: Operation Protective Edge, tomorrow, Friday, July 11 at the SW corner of 19th & JFK at 12 PM.

  3. Contact your US Representatives and Senators and urge them to stand with Israel by issuing a public statement of support for Operation Protective Edge and Israel’s right to defend itself.

  4. Many Israeli charitable organizations are stepping in to provide assistance with essential items for displaced Israelis, care for the elderly, assistance to the IDF, etc. There are many worthy charities that are helping including:

    • Yad Eliezer is sending thousands of gift packs to our soldiers near Gaza.
    • Yad Ezra v’Shulamit is sending tons of food to Israeli families being attacked by Hamas rockets.
    • United With Israel is helping to build bomb shelters in Israeli communities under attack.
    • Thank Israeli Soldiers supports our troops by delivering your personal letter of thanks and a care package of items soldiers need.
    • Magen David Adom Israel’s ambulance, blood-services, and disaster-relief organization.
    • OU Israel Emergency Fund benefiting the citizens of Sderot, Kiryat Gat, Kiryat Malachi, Beit Shemesh and Ofakim.
  5. We can learn and share facts concerning the situation in Israel with friends and colleagues in conversation, email, Facebook etc., to combat the misinformation that is so prevalent in the media. (For facts about the current situation, please see AIPAC’s memo here)

  6. Follow the developments of the rocket fire (and the terror of our Israeli brethren) with the Red Alert Israel app (iOS and Android)

May God protect Israel and our soldiers and bring a speedy, peaceful resolution to this crisis.