As I read the paper on the way to Ottawa for the historic MS St. Louis apology, I wonder…are we heading into darker times for the world? Quebec City, Rohingya Muslims, Rwanda, Darfur, rise of neo-Nazi groups in Canada and around the world are all pointing in that direction.
And then Pittsburgh. Eleven Jews murdered while praying in their local synagogue. First responders injured and the entire Jewish community in mourning.
But wait, all is not lost. Thornhill, Canada and the world have shown that there is light in the darkness.
My phone and email lit up with condolences from many friends in many faith communities who I have met over the years. Not knowing what to do, they wanted to reach out to say that I and the community were not alone. As I had done after the massacre in Quebec City to my Muslim friends, they were in a position to return the sentiments. A Ray of Light.
On Monday night in Toronto, thousands gathered at a vigil supported by every major Jewish organization (not an easy feat in under 48 hours) with representatives from all levels of government and all faith communities standing together. Another Ray of Light.
Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Gazette and NBC news all paying tribute to a global audience, another Ray of Light.
On Friday, I received a call to come to a Markham Mosque to receive a letter of condolence in front of their congregation. We all agreed - when one is attacked, we are all attacked, no one is alone. Another Ray of Light.
Going to Shul on Shabbat with Minister Ahmed Hussen and my Muslim cousins from many congregations, listening to Rabbi Korobkin’s most moving sermon, the light was getting brighter.
All leading to the apology this afternoon in an incredible, terrifying co-incidence.
When we all stand together, darkness can be defeated and a shining future emerges.
When hate is called out for what it is and when we all work together, there is a much better chance for humanity.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, thank you for the apology, for recognizing past sins and working together to ensure “Never Again” really means never again. ...