Rabbi's Letter

July 10, 2018
27 Tamuz 5778
Dear Friends,

My heart has been on a roller coaster these last few weeks with the news of the children who have been torn from their parents and all of the resulting trauma that is unfolding as our government attempts to reunite them without procedures having been put in place to be able to do so. On the one hand we have had humans willing to follow directions and tear crying and frightened children from their mother’s arms.

Please do whatever you can to show care and concern for the young children who are going through this ordeal. I've heard the excuses that indifference makes. Please find a way to help through love, in whatever way you can.
And on the other hand, we have all peered in astonishment into a cave in Thailand to see a completely different story about twelve boys and their coach who were locked in death’s grip by natures violent trap. They are all today free from that frightening cave. It was nothing less than the entire world community that came together to care about 12 little strangers who needed their help. Gathered in Thailand were selfless and good people coming together from all over the world to help.

The best of humanity.
It seems these days that the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows are daily images playing out before our eyes.

On July 4th, a gentlemen named Rodrigo Rodrigues, who was visiting his family from Mexico, was taking his daily walk. Every evening after eating his dinner he would take a walk around the block. He is 92 years old. On July 4th, as he took his evening walk, he accidentally bumped into a little 4 year old girl who was walking down the street with her mother. The mother reacted violently and pushed Rodrigo to the ground and started kicking him in the face. She screamed “Go back to Mexico”. The little four year old girl looked on. The mother, gone mad in her rage and hatred, called to four men passing by and they came and joined in the brutality. They used bricks to hit him in the face, breaking his jaw leaving him bloodied and unable to walk with head injuries, bruised ribs and a broken cheek bone.
Mendoza, Rodrigo’s grandson created a  GoFundMe fundraiser  for his grandpa to help cover the cost of medical treatment.

I personally pray that the outpouring of love and money to Mr. Rodrigues, through the Gofund me page, will soften his beaten soul. At least he can know that, though some humans will act like monsters, many many more will act like angels.

I have sent money to Rodrigo and my prayers for a speedy recover along with a plea that he NOT loose faith in the human race. We must all accept that some human beings will act as if their blood were made of evil, yet we must never stopped having faith that many more, have blood that runs love.

My message this week, my friends is to think deeply about this truth of life, that goodness shines its value wherever it is expressed, as does evil and unkindness.

No one can deny their impact on our world.

We must first fight evil where ever it shows its face and we must insure that indifference and inaction are never permitted in our circles of life, for indifference aids only evil.

Ellie Weisel once wrote,

“I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim.
Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented."

Please follow the Gofund me page for Ronaldo, lets show some love from B’nai Israel for a sweet old man. It is not easy to endure such a trauma at his age. I pray, we all must all pray, that this will not break his spirit and end his life. It will not be easy to recover.

The roller coaster will continue as life is known to do. Know yourself and know your commitment to actively pursuing peace for all, absolutely nothing less will do.

Shabbat shalom,
באהבה ושלום

Shabbat Shalom to all!
הרב אלישבע בת דוד ודבורה
Rabbi Julie Kozlow
(910) 762-1117 ~ B'nai Israel phone