The Toulouse Shootings: May Their Memories Be a Blessing by Judy Bolton-Fasman

Upon hearing bad news, it’s customary for Jews to say Baruch Dayan Emet — Blessed is the true judge. No questions asked. No motives suspected. This is God’s will.

The night before my father’s funeral I found a tattered prayer book in my old bedroom, a small square book with pastry thin pages that I had from my Yeshiva school days. The book was thick with line after line of tiny Hebrew letters. I practically choked on the chewy Aramaic. But this was the only way I knew how to prepare to be my father’s Kaddish.

I also knew that I would not find a single word about death in the Kaddish. But I was struck by the phrase that translated as “magnified and sanctified.” The words were connected to the act of enlarging God’s stature and acknowledging His holiness. The words of the Kaddish read like a stiff valentine to a lover who, in my resentful state of mind, did not deserve any adoration.

But sometimes there is nothing to do but to say the Kaddish. To accept God’s judgment. And yet to still be angry with Him. And so it is for the three children and their father, murdered in Toulouse because they were Jews. May their memories be a blessing. And may I be able to cope with being alternately grief-stricken and enraged over their deaths.



Yitgadal viyitkadash sh’may raba, b’alma deevra chiruteh v’yamlich malchuteh b’chayechon uvyomechon, uv’chayey d’chol bait yisroel baagalo uvizman koreev, v’imur amen.

Y’hay sh’ may rabba m’vorach l’olam ulmay ulmaya.

Yitbarach v’yishtabach v’yitpoar vitromam viyitnasay, viyi’t hadar, v’yitaleh v’yatalal sh’may di’kudisha, breech hu, l’ayla min kol beerchata v’sheerata, toosh b’chata v’nechemata, d’ameeran, b’alma, vi’imru amen.

Yi’hay shl’omo rabba min sh’maya v’chaim alenu v’al kol yisrael, vi’imur amen.

Oseh shalom b’m’ramav, hu yaaseh shalom, alenu v’al kol yisrael, v’imru amen.


Magnified and sanctified be the glory of God

In the world created according to His will.


May his sovereignty soon be acknowledged,

During our lives and the life of all Israel.

Let us say: Amen.


May the glory of God be eternally praised,

Hallowed and extolled, lauded and exalted,

Honored and revered, adored and worshipped.


Beyond all songs and hymns of exaltation,

Beyond all praise which man can utter

Is the glory of the Holy One, praised is He.

Let us say: Amen.


Let there be abundant peace from heaven,

And life’s goodness for us and for all Israel.

Let us say: Amen.


He who ordains the order of the universe

Will bring peace to us and to all Israel.

Let us say: Amen.




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