The Chief Rabbi led a moving tribute on May 2 to those killed during the Lag B’Omer tragedy in Israel.
Addressing a virtual memorial ceremony with over 1,000 participants, Ephraim Mirvis said: “What happened on Lag B’Omer was the very opposite of what should have happened. This year during the initial days of the Omer there was respite, a break in the plague of death that is Coronavirus.”
“We had been celebrating that there had been hardly any deaths in Israel and that we were moving towards an era of peace, tranquillity and good health. Then came along Lag B’Omer and for us this year it was a day of death, horrific suffering and unimaginable pain and horror for all of Israel.”
The Chief Rabbi added: “We cannot even try to attempt an explanation but we can be together. That is something the Jewish people are wonderful at doing.”
Joining the Chief Rabbi was Tzipi Hotovely, Israel’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, who thanked the community for “showing such solidarity with the people of Israel.”
“As Israeli ambassador I finally got to feel how strong we are as a community. The Jewish people have supported and strengthened those families who need our prayers to get back to a normal life and be healthy again.”
“This tragedy was also international and the whole world was shocked. We received condolences from the entire British leadership… who all showed solidarity with the people of Israel.”
“I would like to say how much we care and how important it is to us.”
The ambassador also shared her condolences with the family of Moshe Bergman, “a young boy who just wanted to celebrate with all the other people.”
You can watch the ceremony back here.