SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Monday night, local Jewish communities came together to mourn the loss of life, as the death toll continues to rise in Israel from the attacks from Hamas.

Heartbreak and horror for the Jewish community here in western Massachusetts, while war rages on overseas. Here at home they’re uniting, trying make sense of the violence in the Middle East.

“It feels very personal, its sad and traumatic in some cases,” stated Nora Gorenstein, member of the Jewish Federation of Western Massachusetts. “Almost everyone knows folks who are in Israel right now.”

Rabbi Amy Walk of Temple Beth El adding, “It was and is an attack on the Jewish people to which we all need to respond in clear terms, one way of doing that is to just show up and not look away, to listen, hold space for the rage and shock, in solidarity.” That solidarity being shown here at Temple Beth El in Springfield.

Mayor Domenic Sarno, ensuring extra police patrols there and other places of worship, to give peace of mind, even for just a moment. “It also affects us here in the United States of America and the Jewish Community of Springfield, Western Massachusetts,” added Sarno. “Now is the time that we send a message that we will continue to stand in solidarity.”

Congressman Richard Neal, echoing the words of President Joe Biden, that Israel will continue to be supported by the U.S., “Israel is an ally and a friend, a reliable friend to the United States and the only Democratic nation in the Middle East and we need to be reminded of that.”

In the meantime, local Jewish leaders, like Rabbi Jeremy Master of Sinai Temple, also asking for support, “There are thousands of people who are injured who are going to have to go through recovery. Any help that people can send to Israel will be greatly appreciated.”

The Jewish Federation has information on how you can support the people of Israel on their website. Click here to make a donation.

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