Two years after the horrific massacre at the HyperCacher kosher supermarket in Paris, Rabbi Yitzchak Katz, one of the leading Rabbanim of the city, spoke in New York about the event and to express the gratitude of the Jewish community of France to the Jews of America.
In an address delivered at a fundraising dinner for the Fund for the Children of France, Rabbi Katz described the HyperCacher massacre as an “earthquake” for French Jewry. In the wake of the tragedy, many felt that they could no longer live in France, and a wave of emigration ensued that endangered the survival of the Jewish community.
But then, he said, the Jews of America came to stand by them, and established the Fund for the Children of France, to give support and encouragement to the shaken community. The aid has been two-tracked: to offer support to the French Jews who have moved to Israel, to help them find traditional Jewish education; and in France, to reinforce the existing institutions, that they may survive and prosper.
Rabbi Katz reminded the gathering, which included distinguished Rabbanim and communal leaders from all over the U.S., that whenever Jews have had to go into galus, they have faced not only the material challenges of physical and economic survival, but spiritual perils as well. He gave as one example, that after the pogroms in Russia in 1881, the Jews who fled to France and the U.S. were ravaged by the forces of assimilation.
The event was held during the sheva brachos of the son of the Satmar Rebbe,Harav Zalman Leib Teitelbaum, shlita,who serves as one of the heads of the Fund for the Children of France.