[Archived from March 20, 2009]
[by Phyllis Shaikun]
Each year, Jewish communities around the world set aside one special day, Yom HaShoah, to come together to remember and acknowledge the loss of 6 million Jews and 5 million others, including 2 million children, murdered by the Nazis during the Holocaust, and also to teach the lessons of the Shoah that tolerance and understanding must defeat bigotry and hatred in our world.
This year’s Louisville commemoration, entitled “Remember for Life,” will be held on Monday, April 20, 7 p.m., at Bellarmine University’s Frazier Hall. Keynote speaker will be Rabbi Bradley Hirschfield, president of CLAL – the National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. CLAL stimulates lay, professional and rabbinic leadership to help build inclusive, responsive Jewish communities, makes individuals aware of new Jewish possibilities and develops insights from Jewish wisdom to share with the American Jewish community.
An acclaimed author, lecturer and commentator on religion, society and pop culture, Rabbi Hirschfield offers a unique perspective on the American spiritual landscape and political and social trends to audiences nationwide. Ranked two years in a row as one of Newsweek’s “Top 50 Rabbis in America,” he was the only rabbi featured on ABC’s “Nightline UpClose” and is a frequent commentator on CNN, PBS, MTV and NPR. He has a regular spot on WWSB-TV (Florida ABC affiliate) as well as PBS-TV’s “Frontline: Faith and Doubt at Ground Zero” and “Religion and Ethics Newsweekly.”
Rabbi Hirschfield recently wrote a book entitled Remember for Life, in which he pairs each week’s Torah portion with a related story about the Holocaust. His address on Yom HaShoah will acknowledge that Jewish communities around the country are losing the survivors who lived among them, like Ernie Marx and Ilse Meyer, and soon they all will be gone. People will not have the opportunity for a tangible experience with someone who lived through the Shoah, so we need to build a dynamic from their stories that will allow us to be proactive in commemorating them and making the lessons of the Holocaust relevant for future generations.
The Louisville Youth Choir will provide a musical accompaniment. The text for the lyrics from their song was found carved on a cellar wall in Cologne, Germany, where Jews were hiding from the Nazis.
“I believe in the sun, even when it is not shining. And I believe in love, even when there’s no one there. And I believe in God, even when He is silent. I believe through any trial, there’s always a way. But sometimes in this suffering and hopeless despair, my heart cries for shelter even when there’s no one there. But a voice rises within me, saying hold on, my child. I’ll give you strength. I’ll give you hope, just stay a little while. May there someday be sunshine. May there someday be happiness. May there someday be love. May there someday be peace.”
While there are still some Holocaust survivors among us to tell the stories and bear witness to the suffering, their numbers decline each year. We come together to resolve, in their names, that such a tragedy will never happen again. Each year the names of Holocaust victims are recalled at the program. The current list of names is available on the Federation’s website at www.jewishlouisville.org. If you have relatives or friends, not already on the list, whose name you would be interested in having remembered that evening, please send them to Scott Goldman, 459-0660; e-mail sgoldman@jccoflouisville; submit them by clicking here.
Jon Klein is chairperson of the Yom HaShoah 2009 Planning Committee. Committee members include Peter Anik, Helene Banks, Jeff Bar, Craig Friedman, Gila Glattstein, Fred Gross, Michael Gross, Ann Klein, Cantor David Lipp, Keith Meador, Keiron O’Connell, Daniel Penner, Daniel Streit, Dr. Melanie-Prejean Sullivan and Fred Whittaker.
The program is sponsored by the Jewish Community Center and the Jewish Community Federation. The Jewish community is grateful to Bellarmine University for hosting the event and to its staff for their support of the Yom HaShoah program.
The following is the current list of names of Holocaust victims (also available online at www.jewishlouisville.org) to be recalled during the program:
Estraya Menashe Capelouto
Serena Shemarya Fis
Erzsébet Guttman Klein
Frieda Weisz Löw
Theresa (Toni) Heumann Marx
Minnie and David Epstein and their Grandchildren
Eva Roth, daughter of Joseph Roth and Borishka Blau Roth
Shari Roth Grunstein
Miriam Gluck Roth
Arthur Kopf and Family
Esther Gittel Perkal
Chaim Josef Jacubowicz
Ethel Roth Dank
Silvia Fredenika Eurbach
Arthur and Selma Baer, their son and daughter
Simon Bensinger and children
Augusta Valfer and husband
Zelda Malka Bronzstein
Keila (Redlich) Waldman
Devorah (Lederman) Szlenczynski
Bertha and Isidor Lion
Hedwig and Bernhard Boehm
Jacob and Martha Moritz
Benjamin Scheer and family
his wife Sally Broniatowski, and their son Sascha Broniatowski.
Martha Silvermann Einstein
Thelma Sara Rothschild