Thursday, July 20, 2006

Not the reason for which I would have preferred to participate in a Tehillim group for the first time

One of the women in my office sent an e-mail to every female Jewish employee she could think of in our office, urging us to get together at 2 every day to say tehillim (psalms) for the captured soldiers and for the people of Israel. She's serving as our tehillim leader. Unlike the leader of a (men's) minyan, she just pulls up a chair by a table in the middle of the group, has a seat, and reads one psalm after another. It's a very quiet group, compared to a bunch of guys shuckling away and davvening at the tops of their lungs. The women who know what they're doing just whisper the tehillim along with her. The rest of us manage with the translations. I'm mostly following the Hebrew in the English (meaning that I know where she's reading, most of the time, but I can't read quickly enough in Hebrew to join in, most of the time.) It's certainly a different way of davvening than going to morning minyan. I just wish I weren't praying for people's lives.

Here, again, are the names of the captured chayalim, soldiers, of Tzahal (Tzava Haganah L'Yisrael), the Israel Defense Force (IDF).

Gilad ben Aviva Shalit
Ehud ben Malka Goldwasser
Eldad ben Tovah Regev

And here are the names of the children critically injured in the bombing of Tzfat (Safed), thanks to the Orthodox Union.

Michal bat Revital
Bat-Tzion bat Revital
Avraham Natan ben Revital
Odel Hannah bat Revital

And since the women who know what they're doing tell me that this prayer isn't reserved for weekday Torah services only, as I had thought, I'll post it, as it's just about the most appropriate prayer I've seen:

Acheinu kol beit Yisrael, ha-n'tunim b'tzarah u-v'shivyah, ha-omdim bein ba-yam u-vein ba-yabashah, haMakom y'rachem aleihem, v'yotziyeim mi-tzarah li-r'vachah, u-mei-afeilah l'orah, u-mi-shibud li-r'gulah, ha-sh'ta ba-agalah u-vi-z'man kariv, v-nomar, amen.

(From a translation given to me by a sister employee, copied, she said, from the OU website:)

"If any of our fellow Jews are in jeopardy or are entrapped, whether overseas or at home, may the Almighty take pity on them and deliver them from trouble to relief, from gloom to bright light, and from tyranny to freedom, urgently, swiftly, and very soon, and let us say, amen."


Blogger Ezzie said...

We used to say Acheinu whenever we had a special Tehillim gathering, after we'd said all the others that we planned to.

Fri Jul 21, 02:14:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Ezzie, that certainly makes sense. I can't think of a single other prayer that I know that addresses this tragic and frightening situation so directly.

Fri Jul 21, 09:22:00 AM 2006  

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