Jewish community's Shabbat dinner takes on more reflective tone a week after attack on Israel

Shabbat dinner is supposed to mark the beginning of the day of rest, but many were still feeling restless with continuing violence.

News 12 Staff

Oct 14, 2023, 12:12 AM

Updated 192 days ago

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Shabbat dinner at the Jewish Community Center of Mid-Westchester in Scarsdale took on a more reflective tone nearly a week after Hamas launched a surprise attack on Israel.
Shabbat dinner is supposed to mark the beginning of the day of rest, but many were still feeling restless with continuing violence.
Music filled the room with songs that were sung for Israel and prayer for the end of war.
Once the music dimmed, 30 people sat down for Shabbat dinner.
By coming together, organizers said they were bringing light into the world by connecting with other human beings.
"The ability to stand together in community and solidarity is particularly poignant and meaningful," said Elise Dowell, CEO of the Jewish Community Center of Mid-Westchester.
"We are distraught, we are upset, we are worried, we are worried sick. A lot of us have family there. We have friends there," said Rabbi Dahlia Bernstein.
Since violence broke out last week, at least 2,800 people in Israel and Gaza have been killed and thousands of others injured.
"It's terrible. I can't fathom the barbarism that Hamas has displayed," said Jewish Community Center member Bob Friedland. "We have a lot of family there. We have a lot of friends there. It's almost unimaginable what they are living through."
The event at the center took place amid increased security prompted by Hamas's calls for protest.
"We always have a significant security posture, but we have an expanded police presence right now," Dowell said.
"To put it positively, I feel safe. I don't feel threatened and that feels good," Friedland said.
The Jewish Community Center will also hold a fall festival this Sunday where further resources and ways to donate will be highlighted.


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