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Oseh Shalom- Praying for Peace

By David Wall

“Oseh shalom bimromav. Hu ya’aseh shalom aleinu. V’al kol Yisrael V’imru” (They who make peace in their high places, may they bring peace upon us, and upon all Israel.)

How many times have you said these words and truly understood what you’re staying and overlooked the importance?

When I was 11, I was part of a choir that was invited to sing a newly composed version of Oseh Shalom with the chief rabbi of the UK, to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Israel’s independence. He shared that for him, Oseh Shalom means that we pray for, “One thing above all: That for Israel, for the Jewish people, and for the world, that there should be peace.” However when you are this young it’s hard to understand the true meaning behind it

5 years later I was asked to sing Oseh Shalom at London’s Holocaust memorial service in front of survivors. At this point the power of the prayer hit me and my own meaning formed and the prayer shaped my Jewish identity.

When I sing the prayer for peace, I pray for the hope that one day we can live in a world where there is equality for everyone, where every person can find self-peace and comfort in themselves, and that the Jewish people and people of every religion can live in a world without hate and exist in harmony.

I pray that I will forever be able to fight for this future and be able to pass on this message to the many generations after me in the hope they will do the same.

So to Chavurah, on your last day as campers, I hope that the group of young adults sat in front of me, go on to become the next generation of great leaders that I know you can be, and join the fight for peace and equality and inspire the next generation to pray and fight for peace until we live in a world we can all be proud of.

David Wall is returning to camp for his 4th summer. He spent 2 summer on the waterfront staff and this is his second summer working with Chavurah. He recently graduated from the University of Birmingham and will start his studies for a Master’s degree in Marketing this fall. 

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