2011 March of the Living offers adults an unforgettable 5-Star journey
Adults from Palm Beach County are being offered a once in a lifetime opportunity to participate in the 2011 March of the Living with a special 5-Star Adult Bus trip in Poland and Israel. The unforgettable experience will include the annual March of the Living from Auschwitz to Birkenau, alongside thousands from all over the world on Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day, and celebrating Yom HaAtzmaut, Israel Independence Day, in the Jewish homeland. Rabbi David Steinhardt will lead this remarkable trip for the Southern Region of the March of the Living from April 27 to May 11, 2001, along with seasoned Holocaust educators from the March of the Living and the Melton Adult Mini School’s international offices.
All those interested in learning more about the 5-Star Adult Bus are invited to an informational “parlor meeting” on Sunday, September 26 at 4:30 pm, in the Jerusalem Room on the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County campus, at 9901 Donna Klein Boulevard west of Boca Raton.RSVP is required: call 561-852-6045 or email MOL@bocafed.org.
“Since 1988, the March has been a vital, life-shaping experience for many of our community’s students. But this unparalleled international educational experience is not only a youth experience. It is also a deeply important adult experience,” said Rabbi Steinhardt, Senior Rabbi at B’nai Torah Congregation in Boca Raton and Chair of the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County.
“Through the March, participants literally ‘visit history,’” continued Steinhardt. “We will get a sense of both the hardships and the grandeur of prewar Polish Jewry. We will gain insight into Jewish life under Nazi occupation, the horrors of deportation and concentration camps, and the extermination of the Jewish people in that event we call the Shoah. As we then travel to Israel, we will come to personally and profoundly understand the necessity of a Jewish homeland, and we’ll feel the elation of Israel’s being! Our days shared will be both a time of learning and a spiritual journey!”
Participants in the community’s first adult bus, part of the area’s 2008 March contingent, could not have been more fervent in describing their experience.
Marla Birman described how she showed the marchers the window of the Auschwitz infirmary from which her 13-year old father had jumped to save himself. “Of course, it was deeply wrenching for me. But it was also wonderful to see our community’s teens’ and adults’ emotional connection to our history, and their passion for carrying the torch of memories,” she said.
Phyllis Gutmann explained how she observed her own as well as Israel’s 60th birthday on the March, while paying respects to her family’s unknown history in Poland.
Wanting “more than a regular mission experience, Nancy Weingard was also profoundly affected. “Besides the births of my two children it was the most meaningful experience of my life,” she said.
“We march to keep alive the memories of the millions of individuals who were murdered, the stories of those who survived, and to assure that other genocides will never happen again,“ said Jack Rosenbaum, March of the Living Southern Region Director, based at the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County. “This spring, our area’s adults will be able to participate in the experience tailored just for them.”