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The Tragedy in Pittsburgh


As a resident of both Chicago and Pittsburgh, the news about the synagogue attack that took place Shabbat morning at Tree of Life Congregation strikes particularly close to home.

I was President and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh for 24 years.  In addition, Beverly and I have an apartment two blocks from the site of the killings, and we have a son and his family who live three blocks away.  Squirrel is OUR community.  We love it.

We have a Monday trip back to Pittsburgh.  I can only imagine what we will be confronting there.

In the hopes that we all have for a better future, I want to share the following note that I just got from our Pittsburgh Rabbi, Daniel Wasserman of Shaare Torah Congregation.

On Shabbat afternoon, as I stood in front of the shuI, I was approached by a student who said his name was Ahmed. He held a large serving bowl of hot soup in his hands and he handed me a note with the following text:

"I am a student at CMU. I have lived in Sq. Hill for almost four years now and am very grateful for the hospitality and how good everyone has been to me here. I tried to make something for you. I am sorry for your loss and wanted to give my condolences to your community. Please accept this.  I didn't put any dairy or eggs or anything not kosher in the lentils. My thoughts and prayers go out to the bereaved.



I thanked him and gave him a hug


Here’s to a prayer fulfilled that we can build a better world, one good person at a time!

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