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Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. Senate: Rabbi Mendy Greenberg on 31 March 2022

https://opensiddur.org/?p=43605 Prayer of the Guest Chaplain of the U.S. Senate: Rabbi Mendy Greenberg on 31 March 2022 2022-04-01 12:43:03 The Opening Prayer given in the U.S. Senate on 31 March 2022. Text the Open Siddur Project United States Congressional Record United States Congressional Record Mendy Greenberg https://opensiddur.org/copyright-policy/ United States Congressional Record https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/105 United States of America Opening Prayers for Legislative Bodies 117th Congress 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine תחינות teḥinot 21st century C.E. 58th century A.M. English vernacular prayer Prayers of Guest Chaplains Senate
Guest Chaplain: Rabbi Mendy Greenberg, Director of Mat-Su Jewish Center, Chabad-Lubavitch, in Palmer, Alaska
Date of Prayer: 31 March 2022

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

Mr. SULLIVAN. Madam President, thank you for allowing me to open the Senate with you. It was a true honor to have Rabbi Mendy Greenberg, who is doing amazing work in Palmer, Alaska, open the Senate with his very powerful and meaningful prayer and very appropriate prayer for what is happening in the world.

I just want to say a little bit about our incredible Jewish community in Alaska. Rabbi Greenberg’s parents are actually up in the Gallery watching–his father, Rabbi Greenberg and his incredible wife, Esti.

I just want to say what they do for our–community–communities throughout Alaska–is so powerful, so meaningful, and touches so many lives way beyond the Jewish community of Alaska–way beyond that community. I love the phrase referring to our wonderful Jewish community of Alaska, the “frozen chosen,” because it is a little cold in our State, as most Americans know.

But here is the thing about this community: They are incredible in terms of bringing all Alaskans together. We have this annual event called the Jewish Gala that has hundreds and hundreds of Alaskans of all faiths who participate in this every year. It is one of my favorite things to do as an Alaskan, to come and celebrate not just the Jewish community, but the spirit of togetherness, the spirit of faith, and the spirit of taking care of one another. That is what this incredible community does, led by both Rabbi Greenbergs, who we saw the younger today give this very powerful prayer.

I want to thank him and his parents for being here today. It is not always easy to get to DC from Alaska–a couple of thousand miles at least. To our Jewish community back home, to the Greenbergs for all they have done, I just want to, on the Senate floor here, offer my deepest thanks for the example they set for the entire State of Alaska. It is great having them here, and what they do for our State is really powerful, really important.

Thank you, Madam President, for allowing me to participate in the opening and the prayer this morning.


Contribute a translation Source (English)

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Almighty God, Master of the Universe,
we stand before You in prayer in these troubling times
when innocent men, women, and children
have lost their lives
and millions fled their homeland
due to the catastrophic war in Ukraine.
In the words of King David:
“I lift my eyes to the mountains–
from where will my help come?
My help will come from the Lord,
Maker of heaven and earth.” (Psalms 121:1-2)

May You, Almighty God,
grant the Members of this honorable body
wisdom and understanding
that the ultimate way to eliminate the cause of war
and bring true peace to the world
is by embodying the universal values of the seven commandments[1] Sanhedrin 56a; cf. Tosefta Avodah Zarah 8:4 and Genesis Rabbah 34:8. Six items were commanded to Adam: concerning idolatry, blasphemy, bloodshed, illicit sexuality, theft, and laws…God added to Noah, the law of not eating from the flesh of a live animal.” (Maimonides, Laws of Kings 9:1). The impetus behind sharing the sheva mitsvot in the context of ḤaBaD Lubavitch originates with the following teaching of Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson: “We must do everything possible to ensure that the seven Noahide laws are observed. If this can be accomplished through force or through other kinder and more peaceful means through explaining to non-Jews that they should accept God’s wishes [we should do so]…Anyone who is able to influence a non-Jew in any way to keep the seven commandments is obligated to do so, since that is what God commanded Moses our teacher,” (“Sheva Mitzvot Shel Benai Noach,” Hapardes 59:9 7-11, 5745).  
issued to Noaḥ after the great flood,
foremost of which is not to commit murder.

Almighty God,
I beseech You to bless the U.S. Senate assembled today
to fulfill one of Your seven commandments
to govern by just laws
and in the merit of the global spiritual giant and leader,
Your servant, the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson,
whose 120th birthday will be celebrated this coming month
on the 11th day of Nisan, Tuesday, April 12.

In 1978, this honorable body established the Rebbe’s birthday
as Education and Sharing Day USA
and is proclaimed annually by the President of the United States
in recognition of the Rebbe’s global campaign
to bring awareness and educate our youth
about these ethical values of the Seven Noahide Laws
as the basis for a just and compassionate society.

Almighty God,
may it be in the merit of realizing the Rebbe’s vision for humanity,
we speedily see the fulfillment of Isaiah’s promise:
“Nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war anymore.” (Isaiah 2:4)
With the coming of Moshiaḥ,
Amen.

Source(s)

117th Congress, 2nd Session. C-SPAN.
Issue: Vol. 168, No. 57 — Daily Edition (March 31, 2022)

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Notes

Notes
1 Sanhedrin 56a; cf. Tosefta Avodah Zarah 8:4 and Genesis Rabbah 34:8. Six items were commanded to Adam: concerning idolatry, blasphemy, bloodshed, illicit sexuality, theft, and laws…God added to Noah, the law of not eating from the flesh of a live animal.” (Maimonides, Laws of Kings 9:1). The impetus behind sharing the sheva mitsvot in the context of ḤaBaD Lubavitch originates with the following teaching of Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson: “We must do everything possible to ensure that the seven Noahide laws are observed. If this can be accomplished through force or through other kinder and more peaceful means through explaining to non-Jews that they should accept God’s wishes [we should do so]…Anyone who is able to influence a non-Jew in any way to keep the seven commandments is obligated to do so, since that is what God commanded Moses our teacher,” (“Sheva Mitzvot Shel Benai Noach,” Hapardes 59:9 7-11, 5745).

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