Congregations in Albany come together to mourn the tragedy in Pittsburgh

October 29, 2018 05:09 PM

ALBANY, NY - Hundreds of people gathered in unity Sunday night at Temple Israel in Albany, as they began remembrance services with a song many in this country are so proud of -- the National Anthem. 

"I hope there will be a sense of healing after this evening. People feel a little helpless right now. None of us have ever experienced this in our country," said Cantor Jodi Schechtman of Congregation Beth Emeth.


Members of the Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York say they needed to hold community-based services to show the importance of unity and peace after the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in the U.S. in Pittsburgh on Saturday.

"After having a tragedy like this, we are conservative Jews and reformed Jews and Orthodox Jews, and non-affiliated Jews, we are the Jewish community of the Albany area," said Schechtman.

"It's in no small measure a desire to be together, to hold each other either spiritually, sometimes even literally, to draw strength from each other, to remind ourselves we are not alone," said Rabbi David Eligberg of Temple Israel. 

Those attending stood during a remembrance prayer as the names of all 11 lives lost were recited one by one.

While many at the service came from Jewish backgrounds, all were welcomed in and joined by a common denominator, supporting each other. 

"It's okay to be different, we can no longer tolerate this lack of moral leadership in our country," said Alice Green of the Center for Law and Justice.

Some saying they left the services Sunday night with hope.

"We all felt being together in one place sent a much more powerful message, not to just to the outside, but to each other. We really are united in the face of tragedy," said Eligberg.


Brooke Selby

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