Yom HaShoah: Savannah community to observe Holocaust Remembrance Day

Detail from Yom HaShoah Art Project by 8th Grade Class at Savannah Country Day School.

Shoah is the Hebrew word for catastrophe. It is the term used to describe the catastrophic destruction of six-million European Jews between 1938 and 1945. Each year, Yom HaShoah is the day set aside to remember those who suffered, those who fought, those who perished and those who survived.

Savannah’s observance of Yom HaShoah will take place Thursday, April 28 at the Jewish Educational Alliance, 5111 Abercorn St.

Prior to the Yom HaShoah observance, the Savannah Jewish Federation sponsored the annual Holocaust Art & Writing Contest for Chatham County middle and high school students. The entries are exhibited in the Jewish Educational Alliance (JEA) Art Gallery throughout the month of April.  Art and Writing contest winners will be recognized during the evening program.

In the JEA Art Gallery is also “Anne Frank in Translation,” a traveling exhibit from the Kennesaw State University Museum of History and Holocaust Education.

This 8-panel traveling exhibit illuminates the process of commemoration and the role played by editors, publishers, translators, playwrights, curators, composers, and performers. The exhibit helps visitors understand Anne Frank’s enduring popularity and legacy as a symbol of the Holocaust while complicating the inevitability with which this phenomenon is often approached by people who have read Anne Frank’s diary.

The Day of Remembrance observance will begin at 9:00 am in the JEA front lobby with the Reading of the Names.  Throughout nine and a half hours, community members take 15 minute shifts to read the names of the children who perished in the Holocaust and their memories honored.

The Yom HaShoah Commemoration will begin at 7:00 pm.  It will include Keynote Speaker Ted Kleisner, benedictions from the Rabbis of Savannah’s Jewish congregations and lighting memorial candles in recognition of local Holocaust survivors, their families and the original 19 families that came to live in Savannah after surviving the Holocaust 1949.

The Yom HaShoah ceremony is free and open to the public. People from all faiths are invited to attend.

To learn more visit savj.org/yom-hashoah

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