A Jew and a Muslim Struggle Together after Colleyville

In this series of reflections, two activists consider, in partnership, their reactions to the hostage situation in Colleyville.

“It had become clear that the person holding hostage those in the synagogue was Muslim, and while I listened to the Psalms with prayers in my heart for the safe release of the hostages, my mind also turned to the implications of this for my Muslim friends. My support of their strong voices and hearts in support of our Jewish communities felt even

more critical in that moment. Once I had connected a few of these threads into whatever spiritual and emotional safety nets our communities were build- ing together that night, I was able to turn to my own prayer community where we were gathering for Torah study. We were studying the parting of the Red Sea from that week’s Torah portion after some moments of silent prayer, when the news came in— the hostages were out safely! And, like the sea part- ing, a moment of the deepest fear and uncertainty turned into a moment of great relief and gratitude, flowing out in tears that could not be contained.

ANDREA HODOS on the Lilith blog, March 2022.


“I felt myself stuck in the expansive outdoors. I couldn’t stop thinking about the families waiting for the hostages. Loved ones whose hearts ached for the safety of a parent, a spouse, a child… My eldest and his best friend were straggling behind, enjoying the water and valley we were hiking through,
when they both called out loudly, “Allahu Akbar.” (God is great).

Thinking of the Jewish kids we’d passed (now far behind us) I turned to “shush” the boys. They were smiling with joy and pride. My son said, “wouldn’t it be amazing to fill this whole valley with ‘Allahu Akbar’? Isn’t it beautiful!?” That’s when I realized that if I “shushed” him, I would be silencing my son’s joy and his pride—even his sense of God in the world. How could I? I wouldn’t. I couldn’t. But I must find a way that all our kids, Jewish, Muslim, and other have a space to share their joy and their pain. To be fully seen and fully heard. And to share nature side by side without fear of one another.

AZIZA HASAN on the Lilith Blog, March 2022.

Read the full article here.