Grief, loss, sadness, and anguish

Grief, loss, sadness, and anguish seem to part of everyday life in America and around the world these days. Wednesday, I visited the Tree of Life synagogue and nearby Jewish Community Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, meeting with the rabbi and many leaders of their community. I was overcome by very deep sadness with tears welling up in my eyes while standing in front of the synagogue seeing and feeling all the amazing memorials. It was as if my near and dear had been murdered. The adjacent Jewish Community Center was alive with people of all backgrounds participating in yoga, swimming, other exercise, and many activities in their massive facility. It was buzzing with positive energy from young children to elderly people of all backgrounds, faiths (and no faith), ethnicities, and cultures. At the synagogue Rabbi Ron Symons directs the Center for Loving Kindness and Civic Engagement. They work with all people in trouble, combating hated, ignorance, and prejudice. It is fabulous work. Understandably the community is in shock, yet there is great resilience looking forward to honoring the dead by continuing their nonsectarian service to those in need. I was deeply honored to have visited and spent time with these courage loving people in the middle of their profound grief.