Prayer Recited in One of the Lodz Ghetto Synagogues


“May it be Your will, You who hears the beseechings of Your petitioners, to hearken unto the heartfelt sighs and pleadings that emanate from our hearts each and every day, evening, morning and afternoon. Our endurance is under strain; we have neither a leader, nor a source of support, nor anyone to turn to or rely on, save for You, our Father in Heaven. Our Father, merciful Father, You have visited upon us a daily torrent of retribution, famine, sword, fear and panic. In the morning we say, “If only it were evening,” and in the evening we say, “If only it were morning.” No one knows who among Your people Israel, Your flock, will survive and who will fall victim to plunder and abuse. We beg of You, our Father in Heaven, restore Israel to their precincts, sons to their mothers' embrace. And fathers to their sons. Bring peace to the world and remove the evil wind that has come to rest upon Your creatures. Unlock our shackles and remove our tattered, befouled clothing. Return to our homes those who have been abducted, deported and captured. Have mercy upon them and protect them, wherever they may be, from all evil afflictions, disasters, disease, and all manner of retribution, and extricate us from woe to relief, from darkness to great light, so we may serve you with our hearts and souls and keep Your holy Sabbath and festivals joyously and happily. Illuminate us in the light of Your contenance and make Your signs evident, so that we may witness plainly as the Lord returns the captivity of his people. Then Jacob will rejoice, and Israel will take delight, and may all who seek refuge with You experience neither shame nor disgrace. May God redeem the righteous summarily, promptly, and speedily, and let us say: Amen.”

From: Michal Unger, "The Last Ghetto: Life in the Lodz Ghetto 1940-1944," Yad Vashem, 1995, p. 150.


Source: Yad Vashem