My eighty-eight-year-old mother in law is a Holocaust survivor. She was placed in a convent just outside of Brussels with about a dozen other young Jewish girls who were interspersed with more than a hundred Belgium war orphans.
Yesterday she was puzzled, excited, nervous, and horrified in response to the killing in a church in Texas. She kept asking over and over again “Why do they kill, why do they murder, what is their reason”.
I had no answer. I could have said each attack is a copycat, but why try to make sense of that which is senseless. However, I did want to write about this today but truthfully didn’t know where to start. When I opened up my emails from yesterday, I reflected on the situation. The email was from “D.B.” of Illinois- a generous and longtime supporter of Lev Lalev Orphanage and Children’s Home, and someone who is deeply committed to supporting Israeli charities.
She wrote “Shimon my friend, guess what? I got up this morning and noticed a leaf coming out of the dirt where I planted the olive seeds (we sent her seeds seven months ago from the Bet Shon region of Israel in recognition of her support and care for our Lev Lalev orphan girls). She continued “I can’t remember how many months it’s been since I planted it, but it bloomed like you said it would. Haha, simple things like that give me the hope to believe that things will get better I just need to be patient and believe”. Shalom and blessings, Dawne.
Ma, you know that even after the Holocaust, the most grotesque murderous era the world has known, you flourished. You survived (as did your parents). You married, and had children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. While we cannot understand why bad things happen to good people we can have faith that when the rain stops the sun will shine.
For our girls too at Lev Lalev, their stormy past is replaced with love, hope, comfort, and optimism. This is the engine that drives the human race.
Together we save the world one orphaned girl at a time!