Meet the Bereaved Fathers' Choir

The Bereaved Fathers' Choir is a group of men who lost their children to terror or in IDFservice and who deal with the grief by singing.

Elad Benari & Yoni Kempinski,

The Choir of Bereaved Fathers
The Choir of Bereaved Fathers
Yoni Kempinski

The Bereaved Father’s Choir is made up of a group of bereaved fathers whose children fell during their military service or were killed in terrorist attacks.

The group members cope with bereavement by getting together and performing Israeli songs. They say that singing helps them to cope with the difficult loss. Arutz Sheva recently met up with this incredible group of individuals.

Moshe Har Melekh lost his son, Shuli, eight years ago. One day after marking his son’s yahrzeit (anniversary of death), he joined his choir friends for their weekly meeting.

“I think I get the strength to sing from my son,” Har Melekh said, explaining how he gathered the strength to sing one day after remembering his fallen son. “He was a happy man, he believed in life, he believed that you have to continue. He believed in the land of Israel and in Israel’s Torah so I think that our being here today is exactly what he would have wanted.”

Har Melekh said that despite the great losses the men feel, the songs they sing are not sad.

“I think the songs are happy,” he said. “We sing together for the future: for our children, for our grandchildren. I think that singing together gives hope to all of us.”

The choir has already released one album and will soon release a second one. The choir recently recorded a song with the IDF’s Chief Cantor, Lt.-Col. Shai Abramson and, as Har Melekh explained, “We are getting together with the IDF to say that we are here despite what happened to us. We hope that our loss was not for nothing.”

One choir member, Cantor Moshe Keinan who lost his son Avihu, recently released a single put to the tune of Jewish Canadian singer Leonard Cohen’s song, “Hallelujah.” The words Keinan sang, however, were completely different and reflected his own personal loss.




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