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Jewish Holidays

On Yom HaZikaron, memorial day, the day before Yom Ha’atzmaut Israel remembers all those who died fighting in the war of Independence and protecting the State of Israel

The Mitzvah of Hallel (Part 2)

April 27, 2023, by

Delivered at the OU Israel Center, 4 Iyar 5783 – April 25, 2023 with a digression on Yom Hazikaron/Yom Haatzmaut Rabbi Breitowitz’s Tuesday Shiur is sponsored for the 2023 academic year by Rabbi Refoel and Sharon Auman in memory of their parents, Edith and Reiner Auman, z”l, יונה בן צדוק ז״ל & אסתר ע״ה בת […]

Empty Cemeteries and Jewish Sovereignty

April 29, 2020, by

I just returned from the Gush Etzion cemetery having attended a very unusual Yom Hazikaron ceremony. It was a discouraging but also a triumphant experience. Let me explain. My family often refers to me as a crybaby¬-and they are right. When I witness an emotionally poignant situation, I find it difficult to suppress my tears. […]

Inspired by the People

After the murder of Sarah Litman’s father and brother days before her wedding, she chose to marry after shiva – but this time, she invited the entire nation of Israel. In preparing the video, producers Rabbi Aaron Goldscheider and Jeremy Goldscheider met with Sarah Litman and Ariel Beigel, who are the main subjects of the […]

His Name was Nachshon Wachsman

May 28, 2014, by

Remembrance Day, Israel, 9th May, 2000 Yom Hazikaron, Eretz Yisrael, 5 Iyar 5760 By Esther Wachsman A mother, who mobilized the world to save her son — an Israeli soldier kidnapped by Hamas terrorists — tells the story of one fateful week in the history of Israel. My name is Esther Wachsman. I was born in […]

And God Said, “I Am Sorry”

April 29, 2014, by

Every spring, a number of days of commemoration are observed. Yom HaShoah and Yom HaZikaron, established by the government of Israel, are days in which we honor the memory of the fallen – first for the victims of the Holocaust and then for those who gave their lives to create and defend the State of […]

65 Years of Independence

April 16, 2013, by

On April 11, 1944, a Jewish teenager hiding from the Nazis penned in her diary: “If we bear all this suffering and if there are still Jews left, when it is over, then Jews, instead of being doomed, will be held up as an example.” As she wrote these words, the very existence of the […]

What Are We Thinking: Yom HaZikaron 2009

April 28, 2009, by

Memorial Day conjures up memories of long weekends, the beginning of summer vacation, family gatherings and seasonal sales. Yet since moving to Israel I have developed an appreciation for what I think that the day was meant to be, especially through observances here that are part of the DNA of Israeli culture. For a day […]

Yom HaZikaron: In Memory

May 1, 2008, by

Growing up in the United States, I never felt much emotion on either Memorial Day or Independence Day, which are marked more than a month apart. In Israel, Yom Hazikaron and Yom Ha’atzmaut are two of the most somber and joyous days of the year. The proximity of the two holidays on the calendar – […]

From Ruin to Renewal

June 26, 2006, by

Sefirat HaOmer and the Four Days of Remembrance The period of time beginning the second night of Pesach and climaxing forty-nine full days later with the Festival of Shavuot can be called a time of “Ruin and Renewal” for the Jewish People. The period includes the following six elements, one encompassing the entire forty-nine day […]

A Place to Sigh – Israel Memorial Day

May 5, 2006, by

I WENT TO A FUNERAL — a spring funeral — in the city of Jerusalem. An Israeli soldier was killed; a Jewish boy had died. Another name was added to a list, a long list, of Jews who have given their lives in the past fifty years so that the Jewish State of Israel might […]