It is with a heavy heart that I must mention the shooting at the Yeshivat Mercaz HaRav. Yesterday, as the students were sitting down to a celebration of Adar II, a Palestinian gunman entered and shot wildly, killing eight and injuring ten. It is quite jarring to note that the rabbis of the Talmud have said that the month of Adar is to be welcomed with happiness. How are we supposed to react to such tragic news?

Rabbi Avi Shafran offers us something to think about. “Every terrorist act is despicable. But just as there is a special place for perpetrators of attacks on men women and children doing nothing but going about their daily lives, there is a special section there reserved for attackers of young men who were sitting and studying Torah. Those who were killed, not the murderers for whom Palestinians use the word, are true martyrs, holy innocent souls killed only because they are Jews.”

There’s really nothing more to say. May these holy young men plead the case of all Israel before the Heavenly Throne, and may their families be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.

Good Shabbos,
Rabbi Yaakov Menken
Director, Project Genesis /

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