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Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. Senate: Rabbi Dr. Bernhard H. Rosenberg on 11 June 2003

https://opensiddur.org/prayers/collective-welfare/nation/opening-prayers-for-legislative-bodies/prayer-of-the-guest-chaplain-of-the-u-s-senate-rabbi-dr-bernhard-h-rosenberg-on-11-june-2003/ Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. Senate: Rabbi Dr. Bernhard H. Rosenberg on 11 June 2003 2020-02-02 12:33:12 The Opening Prayer given in the U.S. Senate on 11 June 2003. United States Congressional Record Blog post Opening Prayers for Legislative Bodies תחינות teḥinot 21st century C.E. 58th century A.M. English vernacular prayer United States of America Prayers of Guest Chaplains Senate 108th Congress
Guest Chaplain: Rabbi Dr. Bernhard H. Rosenberg, Edison, NJ
Sponsor:
Date of Prayer: 06/11/2003

Mr. CORZINE. Mr. President, I rise now to thank Rabbi Bernhard Rosenberg for his stirring innovation this morning. This is only the latest honor to be conferred on Rabbi Rosenberg for his lifetime of distinguished service. He is a pillar in New Jersey’s vibrant religious community, serving as a spiritual leader and educator, and his accomplishments speak for themselves.

If I might be personal, Rabbi Rosenberg is a terrific human being, whom I know personally. I am very pleased he joined us.

As the son of Holocaust survivors, Rabbi Rosenberg has taught numerous youngsters the importance of reflecting on that awful period in world history, a period which led to the deaths of more than six million Jews, as well as countless others. He has written many books on that subject, including “Contemplating the Holocaust” and “What the Holocaust Means to Me: Teenagers Speak Out.”

Rabbi Rosenberg has served New Jersey in many capacities, including as a member of the New Jersey State Holocaust Commission, an appointee to the New Jersey Parole Board, and as the chairman of the Edison Human Rights Commission. For his years of commitment to the Jewish community and his humanitarian spirit, he has received a number of awards, including the Rabbi Israel Moshowitz Award by the New York Board of Rabbis, the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award, and the Chaplain of the Year Award for his work relating to the September 11 attacks.

I take this opportunity to thank Rabbi Rosenberg for his years of service to the State of New Jersey, to the Jewish Community, and to the Nation. He has earned the profound respect of the people of New Jersey and this Senator.

Mr. LAUTENBERG. Mr. President, since 1789, every session of the Senate has been opened with prayer. I am proud that the Senate’s guest Chaplain today, Rabbi Dr. Bernhard H. Rosenberg, is from my home State of New Jersey. Rabbi Rosenberg is the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth-El in Edison, NJ.

As the only child of Holocaust survivors, the late Jacob and Rachel Rosenberg, Rabbi Rosenberg has spent his life teaching the history and effects of the Holocaust.

In 1933, there were over 9 million Jews living in Europe. Almost 6 million were killed in the next 12 years. “Holocaust,” translated from Greek, means “sacrifice by fire.” The systematic persecution and genocide of millions of innocent people in Europe was a “sacrifice” the civilized world must never forget. I have met with Holocaust survivors, and I have seen the concentration camps. It was a hideous time in our world’s history. But it is vital to learn about it, and it is vital to talk about it.

Rabbi Rosenberg serves his community as a leader, teacher, writer, and spiritual adviser. He is an impressively educated man, with multiple degrees in communication and education, and his ordination and doctorate of education from Yeshiva University in New York.

Rabbi Rosenberg teaches Holocaust Studies at the Moshe Aaron Yeshiva High School of Central New Jersey, and has taught at Rutgers University and Yeshiva University. Rabbi Rosenberg has authored four books, with “Theological and Halachic Reflections on the Holocaust” now in its second printing.

He is the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth-El and a model citizen in New Jersey.

Rabbi Rosenberg has dedication and commitment that is unparalleled. He is the editor of a Holocaust publication distributed by the Rabbinical Assembly and editor of the New York Board of Rabbis Newsletter. As Interfaith Chairman of the New Jersey State Holocaust Commission, Rabbi Rosenberg is associate editor of the State-mandated curriculum on Holocaust and Genocide.

Rabbi Rosenberg is chairman of the Human Rights Commission and chaplain of the Department of Public Safety, police and fire, of Edison, NJ. He is president and founder of the New Jersey Second Generation Holocaust Survivors’ Group.

The work of Rabbi Rosenberg has not gone unnoticed. He recently received the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award. He also received the Chaplain of the Year Award from the New York Board of Rabbis for his efforts during and following 9/11.

On June 10, 2002, Rabbi Rosenberg was presented with the annual Rabbi Israel Mowshowitz Award by the New York Board of Rabbis.

We are privileged to have Rabbi Rosenberg of Edison, NJ, to lead the Senate in prayer today.


Contribute a translation Source (English)

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Eternal God,
grant us the ability
to face this new day
with faith and optimism.

Empower the men and women
of this respected Senate
with strength
to live
and labor
with sincerity of purpose.
Enable them
to be of good courage
in moments of adversity
and endow them
with fortitude
to fulfill their daily tasks.
Bless our revered Senators
with vigor of body
and health of mind.
Bless them
with the power
to face the challenge of leadership
with valor.

Bless our country,
the United States of America,
and shield its inhabitants
from every enemy and danger.

Help our Senators
guard the liberties
we hold sacred.
Grant that our country will serve
as an inspiring light for liberty
loving people throughout the world.
Inspire our Senators
to help create a world of freedom,
equality,
and justice for all.

Lord,
teach us to walk along the path of life
with faith in Thee
and trust in Thy wisdom.
In the words of the poet,
grant me “the courage to change the things I can change,
the serenity to accept those I cannot change,
and the wisdom to know the difference.”[1] cf. “The Serenity Prayer” (1944) of Reinhold Niebuhr. (Niebuhr used various versions of the prayer widely in sermons as early as 1934.) In the 11th century, Solomon Ibn Gabirol wrote, ואמר ראש השכל ההכרה בין החוח והנמנע, והנחמה במה שאין היכולת — “And they said: At the head of all understanding – is realizing what is and what cannot be, and the consoling of what is not in our power to change” (Sefer Mevakher haPnimim — Choice of Pearls — chapter 17, §209). 
אָמֵן׃
Amen.

Source(s)

108th Congress, 1st Session
Issue: Vol. 149, No. 85 — Daily Edition (June 11, 2003)

link: https://chaplain.house.gov/archive/index.html?id=827

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Notes

Notes
1 cf. “The Serenity Prayer” (1944) of Reinhold Niebuhr. (Niebuhr used various versions of the prayer widely in sermons as early as 1934.) In the 11th century, Solomon Ibn Gabirol wrote, ואמר ראש השכל ההכרה בין החוח והנמנע, והנחמה במה שאין היכולת — “And they said: At the head of all understanding – is realizing what is and what cannot be, and the consoling of what is not in our power to change” (Sefer Mevakher haPnimim — Choice of Pearls — chapter 17, §209).

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