It’s Yom HaZikaron laShoa v’Hagvura (Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day) here in Israel. And I can’t bring back the 6 million or wipe out the horrific injustices that I’m hearing about all over the television tonight. But I do have six answers to the six million, and they are as good an answer as any that was ever found.
One of these answers is about to have his bar mitzvah. He’s putting on his tefillin everyday now in Eretz Yisrael, in the hills in Gush Etzion, surrounded by hundreds of fellow Jewish children.
One of these answers is a great basketball player. He’s playing on a Jewish team on a court built with money from the State of Israel. And he feels like just a regular kid, participating in a regular sport that any kid here might join.
Another of these answers recently helped to plant one of the two new trees in our yard. He’s building up Eretz Yisrael and living out the mitzvot that we will learn about in an upcoming Torah portion.
The next answer is a toothless, fearless little soccer player who proudly wore the uniform of the Israeli National Team for Purim this year (and continues to wear it as pajamas sometimes). He’ll wipe you off the court and then smile at you and see if you want to play again.
The next answer speaks with the cutest little Israeli accent you’ve ever heard. And his Hebrew is better than his English.
And the sixth answer? Well, this one is named for his great grandfather who fought with the US Army in Europe in World War 2 and dreamed a distant dream of having a homeland for the Jewish people.
Yes, I’m left with an overwhelming number of questions when I hear these stories, see the pleading eyes of survivors, and wonder how a horror of this sort could possibly have been allowed to happen.
Yes, I’ve got six of those.
And there is no more powerful an answer in the world to Hitler and his failed attempt to obliterate us.
Because my answers aren’t just thriving, beautiful Jewish people; they are thriving, beautiful Jewish people living in Eretz Yisrael and building a future for themselves, their children and all of our people.