‘Israel is our home, despite harsh difficulties’

President Rivlin visited the family of Rabbi Birmajer who was murdered in last week’s stabbing attack in Jerusalem.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

President Rivlin with the son, Boris
President Rivlin with the son, Boris
Photo: Mark Neiman, Ltd.

President Reuven Rivlin expressed condolences Sunday during his visit to the family of Rabbi Reuven Birmacher, who was killed in a stabbing attack in Jerusalem at Jaffa Gate last week.

His wife Naomi and children spoke with President Rivlin and told how Rabbi Birmacher felt it was a great privilege to live in Israel, despite the difficulties, after the family made Aliyah from Argentina.

Naomi explained how just last week they returned from a family visit during Hanukkah in Argentina, "People ask me if I wanted to go back to Argentina and I say 'no', Reuven my husband would not want that. The spirit that is here in Israel exists nowhere else. This is our home, despite the harsh difficulties".

His son, Boris, told the President of his father’s encouragement while experiencing difficult moments, "My father always said not to give up even when life gets difficult, we must continue. We learned from it and that's what we do."

Photo: Mark Neiman, Ltd.

President Rivlin told the grieving family he was very touched by the things they told him about their father, the remarkable man, and hugged Boris, Rabbi Birmacher’s 16-year-old son. Rivlin told the family that these are difficult times for Israel, but he has no doubt the country will overcome this and that he draws inspiration by these families.

“The pain and sorrow is enormous and I will pray with you that you will soon return to the days where you will feel joy.”