Thursday, June 11, 2009

Yad Veshem

On Wednesday we went to Yad Veshem which is a Holocaust Memorial Museum. The symbolism of the building, the pictures and the names, the stories and movies of survivors were very moving, very powerful. I have read several survivor stories, learned about the Holocaust in school and have been to Dachau, but it still leaves me in shock, distrubed and depressed.
Yad Veshem was a different experience and I think in the end, it was the most powerful, more powerful then even standing in a concentration camp. The name, Yad Veshem, means a name and a memorial and that's what they try to do. They really tried to give the survivors a name, a face and a history and I think they were very successful. At the end they have a huge room filled with notebooks of all the names and the information that they could get about those who died. Unfortunately they only have 3 million names. The Nazis were able to wipe out entire communities and so those names are lost to us. Here's some pictures from the memorial. The website, if you want to see more images (they have a gallery of pictures of survivors and images from the Holocaust) is

At the end of the Museum it opens up, above ground, to this beautiful view of Jerusalem
The inside is designed like it is cracked in half, broken. Most of the museum is underground but there is always light coming through the crack symbolizing the hope that the Jews had during the Holocaust.
The man in this statue chose to go with the orphans that he took care of into the concentration camps instead of taking an opportunity to escape free of harm. There are stones all over this statue. Instead of putting flowers on graves, Jews will put a stone to pay tribute to that person.This is a picture from the Children's Memorial. It was a dark room, with only 5 candles lit. There were several mirrors to reflect the light showing that had those 1.3 million children lived, the generations that came after them would have multiplied like the 5 lights.

Isaiah 56:5

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