Thousands Mourn Slain Seminary Students
Enormous crowds gathered this morning in Jerusalem for the funerals of the eight students murdered last night in a terrorist attack at the Mercaz HaRav Yeshiva. The identities of the slain were released late last night:
Doron Mehereta, 26, of Ashdod
Ro’i Rote, 18, of Elkanah in Samaria (Shomron)
Yonadav Haim Hirschfeld, 19, of Kokhav HaShachar (Shomron)
Yochai Lipshitz, 18, of the Old City of Jerusalem
Yonatan Yitzchak Eldar, 16, of Shilo (Shomron)
Neriah Cohen, 15, of Jerusalem
Segev Pniel Avichayil, 15, of N’vei Daniel in Gush Etzion
Avraham David Moses, 16, of Efrat, Gush Etzion
The photo shows the blood-soaked tallit (prayer shawl) of one of the murdered students whose body was found on the floor, still holding to his chest the Bible commentary he had been studying at the moment of his death.Some students remain hospitalized in serious to critical condition and a call has gone out to the general public to pray for the recovery of:
Naftali ben Gila (son of Gila) from Sderot
Yonatan ben Avital
Shimon ben Tirza
Nadav ben Hadas
Reuven ben Naomi
Elchanan ben Zehava
As the ambulances began arriving at the Yeshiva about 10:30 this morning carrying the bodies of the victims, waves of sobbing gripped the crowds as each ambulance made its way with difficulty through the packed streets surrounding the seminary.The first eulogy was delivered by Rabbi Yaakov Shapira, who succeeded his late father, Rabbi Avraham Elkanah Kahana Shapira, as leader of the yeshiva when the latter passed away just a few months ago. Rabbi Shapira spoke with tears streaming down his face of the “eight sons that we have lost in one day,” and called for a “better and more believing leadership. This slaughter is a continuation of the slaughterous pogrom of 1929 in Hevron [when Arabs murdered with axes 67 Jews in their homes and synagogues]. The Land of Israel, which these eight loved so much and were so devoted for – we have to stop playing with it! We have to stop dividing it!.. Please pray for us, and for the yeshiva, that it should continue to grow and have influence.”
The news out of Israel today is heart wrenching. As it came over the wires yesterday, I was frustrated that we could not get a full report on any news stations. I relied upon the Drudge Report with its list of links to gain information, then clicked on to my sidebar to read from “Schmoozing with Elya Katz,” he is a great source for all things Jewish. This report was in my email this morning, it comes from Leah Rafaeli with The Lekarev Report.
I know the picture is hard to bear, but the understanding that children were murdered as they were studying Torah needs to be grasped. These are God’s chosen people through an everlasting covenant He cut with Abraham. It is a day of mourning. Please pray with me:
May the LORD answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you. May He send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. May He remember all your sacrifices and accept your burnt offerings. May He give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. We will shout for joy when you are victorious and will lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the Lord grant all your requests.
Let us pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Shabbat Shalom.