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Orange County Community Stands With Israel at Solidarity Rally Hosted by Chabad Orange

County Executive Steven Neuhaus lights one of the candles that make up the number 900, the estimated number of innocent victims of the Hamas attack.

Joined by a significant group of politicians and activists, close to 200 from across Orange County gathered at Chabad of Orange County’s new center in Monroe on Monday, October 9th for an Israel Solidarity Rally.


A crowd of close to 200 gathered at the Chabad Center in Monroe for an Israel Solidarity Rally hosted by Chabad led by Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston

Community leaders Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston led prayers and offered words of encouragement, as well as a call to action to help Israel. “There have not been this many roundups and murders of Jews since the Holocaust,” said Rabbi Pesach. “It doesn’t matter where you stand politically or even religiously, we are one family and we cannot remain silent as our brothers and sisters are suffering.” Rabbi Pesach continued that there are multiple ways to help Israel – and they are all essential – “Spiritually, militarily, politically and financially.” Chana Burston added that “We cannot remain silent – we need to get together to show our support and to protest and pray.” Chan highlighted that “The Jewish response to terror is eradicating darkness with light, eliminating hate by adding love.”

The event included psalms for the wounded, prayers for the hostages’ safe return, memorial prayers for the victims and prayers for safety of the Israel Defense Force, and the collective safety of Israel. Many Israeli-born community members were in attendance. Former IDF soldier Yael Block of Monroe recited the prayer for the Israel Defense Force. Michael Cohn of Warwick led the psalms for the wounded and Chabad Gabai Ira Kanis of Monroe led the mourner’s prayer.

County Executive Steven Neuhaus emphasized his unwavering support to help fight terror and bring back Orange County citizens who need to return home. A representative from NYS Senator James Skoufis shared messages of comfort and support. Steve Reich read a message from Monroe Mayor Neil Dwyer. Community member and activist Jack Berkowitz of Warwick offered strategies of lobbying government officials for support of Israel and contributing financially to help Israel.

CTeen Leaders took a stand on the stage as CTeen Leader Lola Sale of Harriman addressed the crowd. “On behalf of the Jewish teen community it is important that we show that we stand with Israel. As young people we need to be actively educated on the violent acts going on in Israel. It is our responsibility to show that what is going on in Israel is completely unacceptable and we will not watch in silence.” Sale adds that “This is not just a tragedy in the Jewish community but is a global heartbreak and humanitarian crisis.”

CTeen Leader Lola Sale of Harriman, surrounded by her fellow CTeen Leaders, speaks at the Israel Solidarity Rally hosted by Chabad led by Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston

The Monroe Police Department, State Troopers and the Orange County Sheriff's Office showed strong presence at the event.

Community member Hanna Salzburg of Chester shared her experience of living in Israel for the last decade, and how most of her friends are now heading to the reserve. Chabad is offering links for resources to support Israel. Email, call 845-782-2770 or log onto

Local politicians and community activists who stood in solidarity with Israel at the Solidarity Rally hosted by Chabad, led by Rabbi Pesach and Chana Burston

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