Responding to Terror in One Voice
January 09, 2015
Dear Friend of The Fellowship,
The gunmen responsible for the massacre of 12 at the offices of the Charlie Hebdo newspaper in Paris have been killed by French police; and another radical Islamist, who held six people hostage at a kosher market in Paris has also been killed. Sadly, four hostages were killed in the latter assault.
If these audacious and despicable attacks teach us anything, we, Christians and Jews, must speak with one voice. Our response must be clear and unambiguous. We should be just as quick to defend the principle of individual rights – a principle based on our shared Judeo-Christian heritage – as others are to attack them. We must be as quick to reject violence in defense of some misbegotten idea of faith as others are to resort to it.
France – and all of Europe – has been experiencing a dramatic and disturbing rise in anti-Semitism and radical Islamism, and these recent attacks are just the most recent, and most disturbing, examples. The Fellowship will redouble our efforts to provide support to Jewish institutions, and aid in aliyah (immigration to Israel) for those Jews who wish to experience the safety and self-determination of living in their biblical and spiritual homeland, Israel. Together – with the help of our dedicated Christian and Jewish friends around the world – we will not fail.
Today, I ask you to pray for the loved ones of those murdered in these cowardly attacks in Paris, the latest in a long series of radical Islamist atrocities. And pray for the day when those atrocities will finally cease, and God will bless us, and His entire world, with His most precious gift – the gift of shalom, peace.
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
President and Founder, International Fellowship of Christians and Jews® of Canada