Best and worst of times

Best and worst of times

This summer has started with bangs and whimpers.

First, three Israeli boys were kidnapped. Neither their families nor the rest of the world knows where they are or what happened to them. Uncertainty and pain continue to clench the people who know and love them, as the rest of us watch and worry and hope and pray. (See page 7 and 22.)

And then there is the Presbyterian Church (USA), whose decision to divest from three companies that have sold goods to Israel is enraging in its self-righteous, sanctimonious idiocy. The knowledge that these self-important anti-Zionists, whose hatred of Israel seems so irrational as to be fueled by pure anti-Semitism, are abetted by the Jews of Jewish Voice for Peace is painful. (See page 6.)

To have to field the Presbyterians’ hatred while assimilating the terror of the teenagers’ capture is challenging.

And yet, closer to home, things are different. Actively rosy. A new learning center, Lamdeinu, propelled by its founder’s passion for Torah, is about to open in Bergen County. (See page 10.) It is unaffiliated with any one organization but promises access to Jewish education for all. A day school, Ben Porat Yosef, graduated its first eighth graders. (See page 8.)

If we can assume that our small world here is a microcosm of the larger world, then we can say that despite the dire, even heart-rending news, there also is much that gives us hope. The trick is to hold onto it.