Beloved Community in Solidarity, Remembrance and Hope
Sunday, May 17
7:45 - 8:15pm
Join us for a moment of community solidarity, as we honor all those who have been impacted by COVID-19. SOMA neighbors are invited to step out onto their stoops, porches and balconies to wave lights in a community-wide moment of solidarity, honoring all we have collectively gone through over the past two months since stay at home orders began. Our youth can display their posters and drawings and share with their neighbors from a safe distance.
At 8pm, local bells will toll and we will lift our lights together, in remembrance and in hope.
This effort to bring us all together is sponsored by Community Coalition's Luminary Project leaders. The Luminary Project takes place on the evening of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday as a sign of our commitment to his vision of the beloved community. In that spirit, we bring the community together now as a sign of solidarity, remembrance and hope as we reflect on the losses of the last two months during the pandemic quarantine, give thanks to essential workers, and share our hope for a safe and healthy future.
View video here:
Rabbi Alexandra Klein, Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel, SOMA MLK Ceremony 2020 - Closing Benediction:
Let there be light. Let there be light. Let there be light.
An ancient rabbi once asked his students. “How can you tell when the night has ended and day has begun?” An eager student spoke up first: "Could it be, that the day has begun when you can see an animal in the distance and tell if it is a sheep or a dog?" "No," answered the rabbi. Another student wondered: "Is it when you can look at a distant tree and tell if it is a fig tree or a peach tree?” "No," answered the rabbi.
After several other students tried to answer the rabbi's question, all without success, the rabbi took a deep breath and said: "My cherished students, the night has ended and day has begun ... when you can look upon the face of any person, and see that it is your brother, your sister. Because if you cannot see this, there is darkness; it is still night."
Dr. King knew the perils of darkness. And we know that the darkness of his time still exists today. But Dr. King also offered us the solution, when he said: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.” The power of a single flame is immeasurable because its light can kindle another, and another, and another. We sit in this room surrounded by light in darkness; the illuminating flame of our youth, of our families, of our neighbors. And yet, we know that there are so many other candles yet to be lit, so many souls who remain in the dark night.
And so I invite you, if you are holding a candle, or if you are at the end of a row near a candle, to lift up that light, and respond to each of the next lines with “let us be the light.”
Only the light of compassion can drive out the darkness. Let us be the light. Only the light of trust can drive out the darkness. Let us be the light. Only the light of friendship can drive out the darkness. Let us be the light. Only the light of beloved community can drive out the darkness.
LET US BE THE LIGHT. Out of the night, a new day will come, illuminating the dark corners of our world. Let there be light, let there be light, let us be the light.