French police stand guard outside the Ozar Hatorah Jewish school in Toulouse on Tuesday, March 20, 2012.
I shared with my Bnai Mitzvah Students today news of the attack just yesterday on a young Jew in France (click here for the article) as well as a shul voicemail I received yesterday (one of 5) from a person urgently arguing that the only way for my Jewish soul to be saved is to accept Jesus' blood as an atonement for the Jews. My thinking was/is that, while our children are blessed to grow up in the supportive Jewish environment at shul and home, both Jewish places where Jews and non-Jews love and learn and grow together, there are students in our shul's class and in their friendship circles who I know encounter much harsher realities. I shared that, though I feel incredibly proud to be a Jew, there are moments that remind me that being a Jew is not so simple, and not always the Freedom ending of the Pesach story. I told my students that, while I believe the person who left me the messages is likely in need of some help, I also felt a bit afraid - as a Jew - when I heard his voice. Sometimes, I shared, being a Jew touches the fear and uncertainty of our history.