By Kristen Cabrera
Jewish Community Center Teen
I first heard about the March of the Living at my BBYO Chapter Leadership Training Conference (CLTC) back in 2009. While I really wanted to go, I didn’t think about it until last year when I was at lunch with the JCC BBYO Director, Mitch Liebeskind, and the rest of the Council board. Mitch turned to my friend and I and said, “You are going on the March of the Living this year!” We told him that there was no way we could possibly go on the March. Yet, here I am today- a participant of March of the Living 2011!
It is incredibly difficult for me to explain what the March of the Living truly means to me. You can watch Holocaust movies and look at photos of concentration camps, but you will not understand the Holocaust until you are standing in the crematorium at Auschwitz.
After experiencing Poland, the second leg of the trip was a visit to Israel. This was my first time there and I was able to appreciate the country that much more after what I had just seen of the Holocaust. Now when I think of Israel, I picture walking to the Kotel on Shabbat with absolutely no cars on the road. I never really valued Shabbat until I was in Jerusalem, where everything shuts down on Friday nights and everyone is home observing the special day.
I wish I could tell everyone in person how important this trip is. Instead, I ask you to experience it for yourself. Find out about March of the Living 2012 at a March of the Living Info Night on November 10 at the Rosenbloom OM JCC. For more information, contact Mitch at 410.559.3549 or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
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