Love Wins: A Pride Prayer, Jewish

jquest“This week will go down in history as one of the saddest and most destructive, ever, in the lives of LGBTQ Jews,” declares an article from O-blog-dee-o-blog-da about the anti-semetic vitriol hurled at LGBTQ Jews at the Creating Change 2016 Conference. Pro-Palestinian protesters called for the death of fellow LGBTQ, Jews on their way to a Friday night Shabbat service. Here’s a Jewish response to this twisted hate: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Levit. 19:18), pronounced “ve’ahavta lere’acha kamocha.” In other words, love wins.

Love Wins: A Pride Prayer, Jewish
One day, the words ‘coming out’ will sound strange,
Oppression based on gender or orientation will be a memory,
History to honor and remember,
The pain of hiding, repressing, denying,
Honoring the triumphs of those who fought to be free,
Remembering the violence and vitriol that cost lives.

When love wins,
When love wins at long last,
ואהבת לרעך כמוך,
‘Love your neighbor as yourself’
Will be as natural as breathing.
ואהבת לרעך כמוך!

One day, love will win every heart,
Love will win every soul,
Fear will vanish like smoke,
And tenderness for all will fill our hearts.
ואהבת לרעך כמוך!

Love wins. In the end,
Love wins.
Man for man,
Woman for woman,
Woman for man,
Man for women,
All genders,
All orientations,
All true expressions of heart.
ואהבת לרעך כמוך!

Let this come speedily,
In our day,
A tribute to the many
And the diverse
Gifts from heaven.
A tribute to love deep and true,
Each of us for one another.
ואהבת לרעך כמוך!

© 2016 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.

Postscript: Thank you to my friend and fellow proud Jerusalem resident Cantor Evan Kent for his suggestions on an earlier draft of this prayer. Creating Change is an annual conference held by the National LGBTQ Task Force. The 2016 conference is still in progress in Chicago. Its purpose: LGBTQ liberation. Its stated intention: to be all inclusive. From the article referenced above: “Ironically the only LGBTQ liberation in the Middle East is fostered by Israel, often serving as a sanctuary for Palestinian LGBT who have been expelled from their homes and hunted by Hamas and Palestinian authority members, who believe gays should die for being gay.” Honor, love and respect to my friends at A Wider Bridge, the host of the Shabbat service and target of ongoing slander.

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Photo Source: Tufts Hillel, JQUEST (Jewish Queer Students at Tufts)

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