Shalom Life | July 07, 2015

March of the Living Teaches the Past while Inspiring the Next Generation

Jewish Identity Program Unites Survivors with Next Generation

By: Daniel Koren

Published: September 24th, 2012 in News » World

March of the Living Teaches the Past while Inspiring the Next Generation

For close to a quarter of a century, the annual pilgrimage known as the March of the Living has been providing teenagers and adults from across the globe the chance to witness – and take part in – history, firsthand.

In Toronto, which supplies the largest delegation of March of the Living participants outside of Israel, the event is funded through donations made to United Jewish Appeal’s Annual Campaign.

Every April, thousands of Jews and non-Jews alike travel to Poland to view the once flourishing Jewish community before visiting former concentration camps and ghettos, and then arriving in Israel in time to celebrate Yom Ha’atzmaut – Independence Day. At the height of the experience, the diverse group of participants gather together and embark in silent march, travelling the three kilometres that separate Auschwitz from Birkenau.

Though the trip can be an emotional journey, anyone who has ever taken part will confirm that it is also utterly life-changing and necessary.

Next year’s March will be Polish-born survivor Mania Hudy’s third. As difficult as it’s been for her to return to Poland, she is grateful to help enlighten others through the tales of her experiences.

“It’s an experience for the children unlike any other,” says Hudy. “They have never lived through these stories, the kind of stories I told them. They saw what Auschwitz, Treblinka and the Warsaw ghetto were like. When they came back, these weren’t the same children. Now they know what Israel stands for, and I noticed this transformation. I know that I will not live forever. They wanted to kill us then, but they did not achieve that. Now I have eight grandchildren who all come from me and I am just one woman. They will all learn how special Israel is to us because of the March.”

Students like March of the Living Alumni Josh Wine confirm the influence the March has on its participants. “We were constantly reminded that the survivor generation is aging and will not be around forever,” said Wine.”I had the sense that it was extremely important not just to listen to the survivor's stories, but to save them in memory; it will be our duty in the future to caution younger generations of the great tragedy that was the Holocaust, by retelling survivors' stories.”

The March of the Living is open to Jewish students in grades 11 and 12. Online registration opens October 10 – 29th, at www.marchoftheliving.org. Information meetings are scheduled for October 4th and 18th at the Beth Emeth Synagogue at 7p.m. Young Adult and Adult Missions are available as well. For more information, contact Sherri Rotstein at 416.398.6931 ext. 5359 or via email at srotstein@ujafed.org

Store of Nazi Weapons Discovered in German Basement Store of Nazi Weapons Discovered in German Basement TrendingHolocaust-themed 'Escape the Room' Debuts in Turkey Holocaust-themed 'Escape the Room' Debuts in Turkey TrendingSurvey: Almost Half of American Democrats Believe Israel is "Racist" Country Survey: Almost Half of American Democrats Believe Israel is "Racist" Country Trending
 

One Rabbi's Quest to Ban anti-Semitic Items from Being Sold on Amazon

July 07, 2015 | By Maria Cruz
One Rabbi's Quest to Ban anti-Semitic Items from Being Sold on Amazon

Mendy Cohen asks that Amazon stop selling books supporting the notion that the Holocaust didn't happen

Read More

Store of Nazi Weapons Discovered in German Basement

July 07, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Store of Nazi Weapons Discovered in German Basement

Among the ordinance found was a Panther tank, a torpedo, and numerous other pieces of illegal weaponry

Read More

Holocaust-themed 'Escape the Room' Debuts in Turkey

July 07, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
Holocaust-themed 'Escape the Room' Debuts in Turkey

The popular immersive experience has taken a darker turn with a new iteration using the Holocaust as its theme

Read More

People Aren't Happy with NOFX's "Happy 4th of JEW-LIE" Comment

July 07, 2015 | By B. Shane Morganstein
People Aren't Happy with NOFX's "Happy 4th of JEW-LIE" Comment

The punk band celebrated Independence Day by posting edgy, arguably anti-Semitic pictures

Read More

Survey: Almost Half of American Democrats Believe Israel is "Racist" Country

July 07, 2015 | By JNS.org
Survey: Almost Half of American Democrats Believe Israel is "Racist" Country

47% of U.S. democrats call Israel racist, as opposed to only 13% of republicans

Read More

Schindler's List Producer Donating his Oscar to Yad Vashem

July 07, 2015 | By Daniel Koren
Schindler's List Producer Donating his Oscar to Yad Vashem

Holocaust survivor Branko Lustig says the museum is 'the place where the award should be kept after my death'

Read More

Surprised? Bon Jovi Pressured to Cancel Israel Show

July 07, 2015 | By Ami Friedman
Surprised? Bon Jovi Pressured to Cancel Israel Show

Palestinian campaign calls on American rock band to reconsider its October concert in 'apartheid Israel,' saying it is being used 'to divert attention from Israel's human rights abuses and war crimes'

Read More

Sex, Drugs, and Milk & Meat: The Yiddish Web Series for Contemporary Jews

July 07, 2015 | By Daina Goldfinger
Sex, Drugs, and Milk & Meat: The Yiddish Web Series for Contemporary Jews

Shalom Life speaks to 'YidLife Crisis' creators Jamie Elman and Eli Batalion about Jewish laws, customs and history

Read More

More Headlines