Jewish Heroes in War Time
October 27, 2023 — By Rabbi David Hoffman, PhD

We want to tell you six short stories about modern day Jewish hero’s.  Repeat these stories to your family and friends.  (Names changed for privacy)

  1. Sharon knows that when the lights go off at night and when there is quiet outside, there is a very different reality inside people’s homes.  Half on the young mothers in the community are trying to take care of their families alone.  Half of the husbands in her community have been called off to war.  And Sharon knows that at night are when fear and loneliness strike hardest.  So, she set up a nightly late-night call to make sure that those women do not cry alone.  They have a “community” to be with even late at night when the streets are silent.


  1. Eli was called up to his unit on October 7.  Eli was a member of the Chevra Kadisha, a unit in the army that is responsible for taking care of dead soldiers and making sure their bodies are treated with dignity and that they receive the honor due to people who are killed in defense of the Jewish people.  Two weeks later, Eli reflects on his experience: “One thing people may not realize is that part of our work is making sure every drop of blood is buried.  Every part of a Jew is precious.  Every drop of human blood represents the preciousness of the human soul.”  These are who Israeli soldiers are.

  1. Eli shares a story from one of the other members of his unit.  A mother comes up to the officer, crying and begging.  She shows a picture to the soldier.  She says, “Please tell me, have you seen my daughter?”  And the soldier looks at the mother and bursts out crying.  He tells the mother, “No, I have not.  But know that she is not only your daughter.  She is our daughter too.”

  1. Jacob doesn’t live in Jerusalem.  But he is on a WhatsApp group and learned of a young Israeli soldier who immigrated to Israel without his family.  The soldier was murdered on October 7 and his family could not make it his funeral in Jerusalem.  His friends, fellow soldiers were still on the border.  Jacob starts making phone calls and starts sending out messages to colleagues in Jerusalem.  “No one should be buried alone.  Especially an Israeli soldier defending the Jewish people.”  Jacob continues to make sure that at all families sitting shiva have visitors comforting these precious families.

  1. Natalie attends a memorial service in a large city in northern Israel.  The mayor of the city seems particularly emotional at the communal gathering.  Natalie – who does not know the mayor – goes up to her and puts her arm around the mayor’s shoulders.  Natalie learns that a relative of the mayor who had lived on a kibbutz in the south had been murdered.  Natalie says – why don’t we say Kaddish together.  The mayor says –“I don’t know it.”  And Natalie and the mayor say the Kaddish prayer quietly together.

  1. One-hundred and seventy-eight young men have been called up from Noam’s community.  Almost double that number have been called up in the reserves.  There’s a lot going on. There’s a lot to worry about.  But Noam organized the communal efforts to help settle and supply three-thousand members of a kibbutz from the south who are now Jewish refugees in central Israel.

The hero in each of these stories is a Rabbi.  A person caring for communities at an extraordinarily difficult moment in Jewish history.


The Honey Foundation for Israel.  Making sure no one is alone.

Leading a Revolution in Israeli Judaism…For Jews Everywhere.