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Statement on the Situation in Israel/Gaza

In accordance with our Jewish values and our responsibility to Social Justice, Beth Hillel Temple affirms our support for the Statement by the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), which is summarized below and edited in response to the changing reality.


“CCAR calls for the swift release of hostages and additional humanitarian pauses to hasten aid for Palestinian civilians in Gaza.  There have been several brief humanitarian pauses to allow food, water, and medicine to flow more quickly into Gaza and to help innocent civilians in hospitals. Even in war, our Jewish tradition demands that we must never lose our moral bearings.


Details continue to emerge about the violence perpetrated against Israelis on Oct.7th. More than 1200 people were killed by Hamas.  More than 200 people including babies, women, and the elderly continue to be held as hostages by Hamas. This is a war crime.


The Reform Movement believes that a ceasefire would give a strategic advantage to Hamas, in their efforts to eliminate the Jewish State. Even as we support Israel’s moral right to wage war against Hamas, we are a people who know that we must never be inured to the suffering of the innocent. We hold fast to the ideal that each of us is created b’tselem Elohim, in the image of God, so we cannot ignore the tremendous toll this is taking on innocent civilians in Gaza. We mourn the deaths of innocent Palestinian civilians caught in the nightmare of Gaza. They too are victims of the brutal Hamas regime and the rising death toll pains us deeply.  


We are humbled by the extraordinarily complex life and death decisions that must be made each day by the Israeli government and military, sometimes having to choose only the least terrible option.


We pray for the safety and swift return of hostages and that all of Israel’s leaders will be guided by the finest ideals of our tradition.”

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