The Grief is Too Large to Hold Alone: Message on Israel and Gaza

The Grief is Too Large to Hold Alone: Message on Israel and Gaza

What could I say that would ever be enough? How much more violence will we see? How many innocent people will be killed and injured?

The grief is too large to hold alone. Thousands of innocent people have already lost their lives and millions are at risk. We know that many members of our NewGround community have family and close friends on the ground who have been killed, injured or taken captive. So many of us are glued to our phones, gripped with fear of what could happen to our loved ones and to the millions of others directly impacted. 

The stories we have heard over the past three days are gut-wrenching. And we know that there will be more stories in the coming days and weeks that will batter at our souls. 

NewGround is about building communities resilient enough to survive the greatest challenges. As our people reach out to us, they are expressing feelings of isolation, abandonment and confusion. Some people are desperately in need of hearing from their friends across this community, and so many are struggling to find the right words to communicate at all.

In this moment, it is vital that we reach out to each other. It will be challenging and uncomfortable. Even when we care about each other, we will still struggle. But we must try our hardest to see each other and listen to each other’s story and pain. Our communities are all stronger when we are interconnected, and to be interconnected compels us to understand how our friends hurt and why.

In the coming days, we will convene our circles of MAJIC alumni, Fellowship alumni and religious leaders around L.A. to talk about all we are feeling and seeing. 

In the coming weeks, we will hold spaces for our community members to share with one another what is most weighing on your hearts. 

There is so much we can’t do, but witnessing one another’s pain and fear with deep compassion is something we can do. It won’t feel like enough. But as the Quran (5:32) and the Mishnah (Sanhedrin 4:5) remind us– to take a life is as if destroying all of humanity. And to save a life is as if saving all of humanity. We pray for a radical witnessing of each other in this moment as one of the most profound and courageous actions we can take right now. Especially as more lives hang in the balance. 

The grief is too large to hold alone. We have to find a way to hold it together. 

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