Yom Hashoah: Holocaust Memorial Day

Remembering the victims.

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One of the most recent achievements is Megillat Hashoah (The Holocaust Scroll) created by the Conservative movement as a joint project of rabbis and lay leaders in Canada, the U.S., and Israel. This Holocaust scroll contains personal recollections of Holocaust survivors and is written in biblical style. It was composed under the direction of Professor Avigdor Shinan of Hebrew University.

While Yom Hashoah rituals are still in flux there is no question that this day holds great meaning for Jews worldwide.  The overwhelming theme that runs through all observances is the importance of remembering--recalling the victims of this catastrophe, and insuring that such a tragedy never happen again.

The Shoah (Holocaust) posed an enormous challenge to Judaism and raised many questions: Can one be a believing Jew after the Holocaust?  Where was God?  How can one have faith in humanity?  Facing this recent event in history, does it really matter if one practices Judaism?  Jewish theologians and laity have struggled with these questions for decades.  The very fact that Jews still identify Jewishly, practice their religion--and have embraced the observance of Yom Hashoah answers some of the questions raised by the Holocaust.

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