2009-04-30 / Top Stories

Canarsiens Mourn Victims Of The Holocaust

By Jason Linetsky

Poems to fit the occasion are recited by students from Yeshiva R'tzad with Rabbi David Lapp (right) directing. Poems to fit the occasion are recited by students from Yeshiva R'tzad with Rabbi David Lapp (right) directing. In honor of Holocaust Memorial Day and Israeli Independence Day, the Sephardic Jewish Center of Canarsie invited residents to the AAA Sfard Shul on Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009 for a night of speeches, songs, and prayers to remember the lives lost during the Holocaust.

Rabbi Myron Rakowitz of the Sephardic Jewish Center and Rabbi Leibowitz of Young Israel of Canarsie began the evening with prayers followed by an explanation of the importance of Holocaust Memorial Day and what was included in the nights' program.

Rabbi Rakowitz then called up NY State Assemblyman Alan Maisel who proceeded to speak of the 6 million Jews lost and the importance of remembering the event each year. He also remarked of having grown up with anti-Semitism as a child and thanked the congregation for holding the memorial.

Also attending the memorial, City Councilman Lew Fidler asked, "Why do we do this every year?"

"We remember the people who lost their lives and those who survived. We need to hear from witnesses and survivors and share these experiences with our children."

Students from Yeshiva Ateres Yisroel Choir lend their voices to the somber ceremony. Photos by Jason Linetsky Students from Yeshiva Ateres Yisroel Choir lend their voices to the somber ceremony. Photos by Jason Linetsky Following the speeches, students from Yeshiva R'tzad recited poems in Hebrew and English with assistance of Rabbi David Lapp and students of Yeshiva Ateres Yisroel sang songs of remembrance.

The final words came from Rabbi Leibowitz as he commented on the dwindling amount of participants for the event and the importance of continuing to hold the Holocaust memorial each year regardless.

"The numbers of members here have declined but it is understandable. We have to teach our children about the Holocaust and hate and racism."

To conclude the occasion, all visitors were invited to light candles as a testament to relatives lost during and survivors of the Holocaust.

Left photo:Nissan Krakinowski, left, assists Steven Kaye in a candle lighting ceremony. Right: Rabbi Boruch Leibowitz of Young Israel of Canarsie was one of the key speakers. Left photo:Nissan Krakinowski, left, assists Steven Kaye in a candle lighting ceremony. Right: Rabbi Boruch Leibowitz of Young Israel of Canarsie was one of the key speakers.

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