The Strength Is Within Ourselves

October 24, 2023
Mihaela Grigorova

Sofia, Bulgaria

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In the past two weeks, the world has witnessed tragic events unfolding in Israel, leaving many communities, including ours, in mourning and concern. As Jewish teens, we find ourselves grappling with various emotions, from fear to sadness, as we navigate these challenging times. I never thought my first Shofar article would report something as horrible as this. Still, in these words, I aim to shed light on the experiences and sentiments shared by Jewish teens worldwide, emphasizing the importance of unity and resilience in the face of adversity.

For many of us, our visits to the synagogue resemble holidays, joyous celebrations, dancing, and singing. However, the recent attacks on Israel have transformed these gatherings into moments of mourning. On Sunday, October 15th, the Jewish community in Bulgaria came together to light candles in solidarity with the victims, each representing a life lost in these tragic events. It is a stark reminder that what is happening in the world is far from normal and should never be normalized.  

The constant fear accompanying our daily lives is an unfortunate reality for the Jewish diaspora. The concern that every outing with our friends may be our last weighs heavily on our parents' minds. The presence of police at every corner near our Jewish schools serves as a constant reminder of the potential threats we face. Additionally, reaching out to loved ones in Israel has become an anxiety-ridden experience, as we worry that each conversation may be our last.

Despite the fear that permeates our lives, we refuse to be silenced. As Jewish teens, we are responsible for speaking up and standing with Israel. By raising our voices, we can raise awareness about our community's challenges and advocate for peace and understanding. Through unity and solidarity, we can combat the injustices and prejudices that threaten our safety and well-being.

In these difficult times, it is essential for us to come together, support one another, and stand in solidarity with our Homeland. We must remember that our voices matter and that by speaking up, we can make a difference. Let us continue to mourn the lives lost but also find strength in our unity and resilience. Together, we can work towards a future where peace and understanding prevail, ensuring a safer world for all.

My name is Mihaela and I am a BBG from chapter Gideon, Bulgaria and I love cats!

All views expressed on content written for The Shofar represent the opinions and thoughts of the individual authors. The author biography represents the author at the time in which they were in BBYO.

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