NEVER AGAIN! “To forget would not only be dangerous but offensive, to forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.… Not only are we responsible for the memories of the dead, we are responsible for what we are doing with these memories. For the dead and the living we must bear witness.”
~Holocaust Survivor Elie Wiesel
Seventy-seven years have passed since the last Nazi concentration camps were liberated and the Holocaust that claimed six million Jewish lives came to an end. To ensure that they did not die in vain and that the Holocaust never happens again, Temple Beth El Israel once again will join Jews throughout the United States and around the world by participating in the Yom HaShoah Yellow Candle Holocaust Commemoration to keep alive the memories of the Six Million who perished.
The Yom HaShoah Yellow Candle is modeled after a traditional Jewish Yahrzeit memorial candle that burns for 24 hours during periods of mourning. The wax reminds us of the yellow arm bands that Jews were forced to wear during the Nazi regime. As the years pass, the memories of those who were victims in this ultimate hate crime must not diminish. We encourage your family to light a yellow candle after sundown on Wednesday, April 27, 2022, the start of Holocaust Remembrance Day, and join with thousands of other families lighting their Yom HaShoah candles. This action will increase awareness of the Holocaust and help perpetuate our commitment to our people—particularly as a response to the recent marked increase of anti-Semitism.
The memory is important! The number of Holocaust survivors is diminishing with each passing day. As we lose this precious link, those who deny that the Holocaust happened gain strength. Sadly, a study conducted in 2018 found that 22 percent of millennials (23 to 38 years old) say they haven’t even heard of the Holocaust.
Please come to our temple on Monday through Friday during office hours from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. or before services Friday evening or Saturday morning to pick up your Yom HaShoah candle. You are encouraged to spend a few minutes in reflection on the importance of the day. Place the yellow candle in your window on the evening of Wednesday, April 27, 2022, and recite the following meditation as you light the candle.
In these memorable days, as I light this Yellow Candle, I vow never to forget the lives of the Jewish men, women, and children who are symbolized by this flame. They were tortured and brutalized by human beings who acted like beasts; their lives were taken in cruelty. May we be inspired to learn more about our six million brothers and sisters as individuals and as communities, to recall their memory throughout the year, so that they will not suffer a double death. To that end, I now memorialize the name and life of (Name Below) who as a child was denied an entire lifetime of dreams and hope. May I embody the beauty and goodness of what could have been had s/he lived. May we recall not only the terror of their deaths, but also the splendor of their lives. May the memory of their lives inspire us to hallow our own lives and to live meaningful Jewish lives so that we may help to ensure that part of who they were shall endure always.
In addition to lighting this candle in memory of our six million men, women, and children who perished, please join us at our Holocaust Memorial Yizkor Service led by Rabbi Benson together with Temple Brotherhood on Friday, April 29, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.
Thank you for your participation,
Temple Beth El Israel Brotherhood