Onward to Israel!

4 years ago Leighest 0

By Zack Horowitz

Wilmington, Delaware

While I knew that the Cteen Heritage Quest would be spiritual, meaningful, and emotional, I could not have predicted just how touching it was going to be. Yes, we are only one week in. But this week has been more substantial, more impassioned, and more surreal than any other week in my life. After visiting Auschwitz, the camp of pure evil where 1.1 million Jews were torn from their families and murdered, we traveled straight to the airport, took a flight to Israel, and drove directly to the Western Wall. We prayed at the wall, toured the underground ruins of the old temple, and strolled through the old city, keeping in mind that we were in not only the holiest Jewish city in the world but also the city in which creation took place— the chosen land for the chosen people. While Jerusalem alone is unbelievable, the fact that we went directly there from Auschwitz made it all the more moving. The Torah tells us that every single thing that happens on earth—even the way a leaf lands after falling from a tree—is an act of God with a purpose that we may or may not understand. We cannot understand why the Holocaust happened. We can’t understand why Israel is constantly under attack now.  But I will say this: Israel has always belonged, and will continue to belong, to us. It is ours in the merit of those who were killed. While praying at the Western Wall upon arrival, one thing felt certain; Israel is where we belong. We owe it to the victims of the past to thrive in the holy Jewish land that they did not live to see. May the victims of persecution rest in peace. May Israel and the Jewish people thrive for all eternity.