Holocaust Memorial Day commemorates the heroes and martyrs of the Holocaust. It is commemorated by their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren who came to the shores of the Holy Land and built a living memorial to their ancestors – Torah true families, a fertile land blossoming from a barren desert, cities teeming, a country thriving and a people flourishing. And more than anything, testimonials and offerings of chesed and faith.
Not everyone of course has the fortitude, bravery and spiritual greatness of these remarkable women who have gone beyond what even Hashem could expect. Or perhaps we do. We are all daughters of the King. We are all each other’s sisters. Avivit She’ar, Eva Sandler, Tamar Fogel, Sherri Mandell and Shifra Hayman would never have wished to be tested in the way that they have been, but the magnitude of their spiritual response is a reflection of the greatness of the many Jewish martyrs and heroes who in both life and death and from death to life have made a Kiddush Hashem. We all have that potential within us, to transcend and inspire and as Sherri Mandell says, Celebrate Life!
God tests us, all of us, in many ways; some to a lesser degree, some with trials of greater scope, but the response can always be that of increased kindness, augmented faith and infinite inspiration.
For all of us there is a time to weep, a time to plant and a time to build.
May we see ultimate salvation and may it come in the blink of an eye.