Dear Fr. Bauer and the entire Basilica community,
Temple Israel joins me in thanking you, our Catholic neighbors in the city of Minneapolis for this annual opportunity to address you during this Tenebrae service, this holy Easter season. The Jewish community throughout the world is in the midst of our Passover celebration, the holiday where we gather to retell the beginning of our story as a people, the Exodus from slavery and the start of our liberation narrative. Passover and Easter intersect more often than not, therefore both our calendars this time each year center on the unique miracles that began each of our sacred traditions. Throughout history Good Friday has not brought our communities together, as it has been a time of deep pain and violence towards the Jewish people. However, Fr. Bauer’s invitation to speak to you this evening is a beautiful act of reconciliation and healing. Words cannot express my deep appreciation and love for your congregation. I am not with you in person because of Covid, and because Temple Israel is not yet open, but my heart is with you as I have stood in your sanctuary so many times, being present for this beautiful service over the years. Thank you for the opportunity to lead this interfaith effort- because I truly believe that when we are in partnership, we have the power to triumph against those who wish to perpetuate hate in the name of religion. We know that our faith is in fact diminished when we speak against another religious community, G-d would not want that. Rather seeing the Divine spark in every person is the way forward. We share religious convictions of hope, justice, and righteousness, and yet we speak different languages in expressing those beliefs, may we learn to do Holy work by walking together in interfaith dialogue and understanding. Then we will create a world that we are proud to pass along to our children and our children’s children. Have a blessed Easter holiday.
In Peace - B’Shalom,