Syn­a­gogues show sol­i­dar­ity

First Shab­bat ser­vice held since Pitts­burgh shoot­ing

South Florida Sun-Sentinel Palm Beach (Sunday) - - LOCAL - By Wayne K. Rous­tan South Florida Sun Sentinel

With the mass shoot­ing at the Tree of Life syn­a­gogue in Pitts­burgh still fresh in many minds, South Florida's Jewish com­mu­nity joined Shab­bat ser­vices across the coun­try to re­mem­ber the 11 peo­ple killed.

Rabbi Michael Gold spent six years at a syn­a­gogue in sub­ur­ban Pitts­burgh be­fore com­ing to Tem­ple Beth To­rah Sha'aray Tzedek in Ta­ma­rac, so it hit a lit­tle closer to home for him.

“We Jews don’t em­pha­size death, we em­pha­size life,” he said dur­ing his ser­mon Satur­day morn­ing, after read­ing the names of the dead and in­jured, and ob­serv­ing a mo­ment of si­lence.

“And yet, ev­ery now and again some­one ap­pears out of the dark­ness who be­lieves in death rather than life,” he said.

That’s part of the rea­son two Broward Sher­iff’s deputies and a pri­vate se­cu­rity guard were out­side, said the syn­a­gogue’s se­cu­rity chair­woman, Sherry Klawsky.

“We have to do the best we can in this new en­vi­ron­ment that we’re liv­ing in, and it is not easy at all,” she said. “You try to mit­i­gate the risk and be aware of your sur­round­ings, and try to be as safe as pos­si­ble.”

So groups in­clud­ing the Amer­i­can Jewish Com­mit­tee and the Jewish Fed­er­a­tions of North Amer­ica or­ga­nized #ShowUp­For­Shab­bat and Sol­i­dar­ity Shab­bat for a show of unity, and many de­nom­i­na­tions an­swered that call.

“We have to mourn the vic­tims, and we should do that with our friends and al­lies in the Jewish com­mu­nity and be­yond,” said Brian Sie­gal, di­rec­tor of the AJC in Mi­ami and Broward.

Hun­dreds showed up in Plan­ta­tion on Fri­day night for a can­dle­light cer­e­mony at the Ra­mat Shalom syn­a­gogue and a ser­vice at Tem­ple Kol Ami Emanu-El.

Co­ral Springs res­i­dent Me­lanie Far­ber doesn’t usu­ally at­tend Shab­bat on Satur­day morn­ing but she took to so­cial me­dia to in­vite peo­ple to be part of the move­ment.

“I did in­vite other friends on Face­book to join me, who don’t have syn­a­gogues,” she said. “To be part of it, to get us to­gether, to show unity.”

Art Langer, also of Co­ral Springs, said he sees signs of hope.

“I think the general pop­u­la­tion is re­spond­ing pos­i­tively,” he said. “I wish our lead­ers would re­spond a lit­tle more ap­pro­pri­ately.”

Eleven peo­ple were shot dead and six oth­ers were wounded, in­clud­ing four po­lice of­fi­cers, dur­ing a prayer ser­vice siege at the Tree of Life syn­a­gogue Oct. 27. Po­lice in Pitts­burgh ar­rested and charged Robert Bow­ers.

Since the mass shoot­ing, me­mo­rial ser­vices and vig­ils have been held across the coun­try in­clud­ing the Holo­caust Me­mo­rial Mi­ami Beach, B'nai Aviv of We­ston, Chabad of We­ston Cen­ter for Jewish Life, Tem­ple Judea in Co­ral Gables, Tem­ple Shaarei Shalom in Boyn­ton Beach, Tem­ple Beth Am in Jupiter, B'nai To­rah Con­gre­ga­tion in Boca Ra­ton, Con­gre­ga­tion L'Dor Va-Dor in Boyn­ton Beach and other lo­cal Jewish in­sti­tu­tions.

wkrous­tan@ sun­sen­tinel.com or 954-356-4303 or Twit­ter @WayneRous­tan

WAYNE K. ROUS­TAN/SUN SENTINEL

Tem­ple Beth To­rah Sha’aray Tzedek in Ta­ma­rac took part in the #ShowUp­For­Shab­bat and Sol­i­dar­ity Shab­bat to re­mem­ber those killed at the Tree of Life syn­a­gogue in Pitts­burgh.

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