We are grateful to be in community as we are shattered in the wake of the repressive terrorist Hamas’ brutal attack of slaughter, torture, sexual assault, and abductions on Israel. So many of us are personally connected to Israelis who have been murdered, kidnapped, or are living in grave fear; even when those in peril are not direct relatives, they are a part of our Jewish family. We hold our breath for more hostages to return home and are inspired by the many families of hostages protesting their government to prioritize the hostages’ release. We are passionate for the security and the democracy of Israel, our Jewish homeland.  And we are compassionate for the Palestinians in their suffering and in the need for a Two State solution so the states of both indigenous peoples can live side by side. We do not conflate Hamas and the Palestinian people and we reject the notion that a stance of condemnation of Hamas excludes advocacy for Palestinian self-determination. Seeing the full humanity of the Palestinians people, we long to see corridors for aid to address the humanitarian disaster in Gaza and to see the Israeli government to mitigate civilian harm. We also call on the extremists in the Israeli government to stop settler violence in the West Bank and to cease their inflammatory rhetoric, which is only raising tensions.


Cantor Brad Hyman’s D’var Torah from 12/29 on his Mission Trip to Israel 

Resources for Change

Videos from the Rally Against Antisemitism


Resources for Combating Jew-Hatred

As our fervent prayers for the hostages continue, and our passion for Israel’s security, compassion for the Palestinians’ suffering, and commitment to a two-State solution remain steadfast, we are seeing increased Jew-hatred here in Philadelphia. From the boycott of some Jewish and Israeli owned-restaurants–some owned by congregants–to the hate speech-filled protests of our congregant’s Goldie restaurant to the testimony of university presidents refusing to affirm that calls for Jewish genocide violate harassment and bullying conduct prohibition, our society’s tolerance and acceptance of Jew hatred demands our response.  Rather than affirming 2 states for Israelis and for Palestinians, protesters’ chants of “River to Sea” continue, and although some may not intend this as a genocidal statement, Jews often hear Jew-hatred in these words, knowing that Hamas’ founding document calls not to share but to “obliterate” Israel. 


Support for Israel

Tzedakah Support

To support the protection and rescue of Israelis, the Jewish community has come together with an emergency fund where you may direct your tzedakah.  Click here to learn more.  

Rabbi Maderer’s speech from the Philly Stands With Israel Rally 10-16-2023

Rabbi Maderer’s D’var Torah from 10-13-2023

Hatikvah at Berkman Mercaz Limud

This video of Berkman Mercaz Limud students and parents singing Hatikvah has been sent to our partner congregation, Achva Bakarem, along with the love and support of our Israel ConnectRS group and our congregation.


A Prayer of Welfare for the State of Israel
by Israeli Reform Rabbi Mira Regev

Our God in heaven and source of life, Rock and redeemer of Israel, strengthen and deliver all who stand on guard protecting their homes, safeguard and save them from any trouble and distress and bless their actions, hear their prayers and ours and deliver them.

Save those who are trapped in their homes, grant them inner strength, faith and hope, bolster them in these terrifying times.

Send Your mercy to the anxious mothers and hurting fathers and the children sitting in shelters.

May it be Your will to remember us, to take notice of us, to meet us with compassion for we trust in You.

Return all those kidnapped safe and sound to their homes, without the spilling of innocent blood, without their souls becoming tarnished by horrific acts.

Strengthen those who protect our Holy Land, soldiers and civilians alike.

We pray “nation shall not lift sword against nation and they will study war no more.”

Compassionate God, please, arouse Your mercy for us, and may the verse be fulfilled: “from the seed of peace the vine shall produce its fruit, the land shall produce its yield, and the skies shall provide their moisture. I will bestow all these things upon you, and you shall be a blessing, have no fear.”