Updated: Oct. 13, 2023
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“This is the most lethal assault against Jews since the Holocaust.”
– U.S. Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism Deborah Lipstadt
It has been a horrific and tragic past 48 hours. Israel is not just another country thousands of miles away. Israel is our home. When Israel hurts, we hurt! When Israel bleeds, we bleed! When Israel is at war, we are at war!
Many of us have family, friends and community members in the region, and our hearts go to each of you. JCJ is committed to justice, compassion, and peace. We support our Israeli friends while also fighting antisemitism in our own backyards.
The Israel that we knew is forever changed—thus, we as a Jewish people are forever changed. We cannot stress enough the gravity and horror of the situation that was inflicted upon Israel by Hamas terrorists.
You can support JCJ’s goals by doing the following:
- Mourn with Israel, which has to bury over 800 Israelis in the coming days, a number likely to increase.
- Pray for the healing of the over 2,200 who are wounded and in need of care.
- Pray for the release of the over 100 hostages who were brutally kidnapped by terrorists and taken into Gaza.
- Advocate for America to support Israel so she can do what is needed to keep Israelis safe.
Since the attack on Saturday morning, JCJ has been active on social media in an effort to keep as many people as possible informed and up-to-date on the situation as it unfolds in real time. Check out some of our recent videos.
Follow Rabbi Joel Simonds for additional context on the terrorist attacks and how we can respond with our advocacy, activism, and prayers.
Follow relevant and reliable news sources providing up-to-date information on what is happening on the ground.
Make a donation to the following organizations:
- American Friends of Magen David Adom supports 33,000 paramedics, EMTs, first responders, and first-aid providers. Funds will go toward ensuring there is training, equipment, and medical supplies to treat all the injured and ill people in Israel.
- United Hatzalah is a community-based volunteer emergency medical services (EMS) organization committed to providing the fastest response to medical emergencies across Israel even prior to the arrival of ambulances and completely free of charge.
- The Jewish Agency’s Fund for Victims of Terror provides assistance to terror victims within 24 to 48 hours of an attack. This aid is critical for victims’ immediate well-being and long-term ability to recover. This support is made possible by the generosity of the Jewish Federations of North America / United Israel Appeal, Keren Hayesod, foundations, donors from Israel and around the world, and by people like us.
What else can I do?
- Stay informed, read the news, and share truthful information with family and friends from an Israeli point of view.
- Check in on family and friends in Israel.
- Check in on each other.
- Pause and give yourself a break. This is going to be a long and difficult war, and the trauma that we all have will be with us in the future. Self-care is needed at this moment.
- Donate now and in the future because Israel needs our help.
- Offer the prayers below.
- Attend a vigil or rally to show our collective support for Israel.
- Contact your elected officials and thank them for standing with us—we will need their leadership on this for the long haul.
Prayers and resources on how to talk to young children about what is happening in Israel.
- Mourner’s Kaddish, a prayer we offer for those who have died
- Mi Sheberach, a prayer for healing.
- A prayer for those held in captivity: Blessed are you, God, who frees the captive.
- A prayer for the State of Israel.
How we talk to our kids about the war?
Sivan Zakai recently penned an article for the Los Angeles Jewish Journal called Walking the Tightrope: Talking About the Current Situation in Israel with Children. Zakai is the author of My Second-Favorite Country: How American Jewish Children Think about Israel, is the Sara S. Lee Associate Professor of Jewish Education at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles.
Read Betsy Brown Braun’s resources for talking with children about the war in Israel. Betsy Brown Braun, best selling author of Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents (HarperCollins) and You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Bratproofing Your Four To Twelve Year Old (HarperCollins), is a child development and behavior specialist, parent educator, multiple birth parenting consultant, and founder of Parenting Pathways®, Inc.