Virtual Commemoration of Holocaust Remembrance
An Evening of Holocaust Remembrance
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April 21, 2020 | 7:00 p.m.
In this difficult time of separation, we at the Rodgers Center send you our heartfelt wishes for your continued health and safety. We deeply miss the opportunity to come together as a community at our spring events. A few weeks ago, we regretfully canceled the awards ceremony for the 21st Annual Holocaust Art and Writing Contest—an event that is the culmination of a year of work. We plan to have a virtual ceremony later this spring, and we will let you know about that soon.
We were looking forward to seeing many of you on April 21 for our Evening of Holocaust Remembrance. We were excited to welcome back to Chapman University our speaker, Esther Safran Foer, who would have shared with us passages from her recently published book, I Want You To Know We’re Still Here: A Post-Holocaust Memoir. Esther’s visit will still happen, but not until we return to campus in 2020-21.
The title of Esther’s memoir aptly captures the message we want to share with you who are our friends and supporters—the Rodgers Center at Chapman University is still here, and we are still committed to and working hard to further Holocaust education and memory. Indeed, this challenging time gives us a faint glimmer of insight into the experiences of those who endured years of suffering and separation from loved ones in ghettos, camps, and in hiding. The last few weeks of self-isolation have given me an even deeper awe and respect for those who have been willing to relive and share their memories as witnesses to those who did not survive.
With that thought in mind, we hope that we can come together as a community to share a virtual Evening of Holocaust Remembrance at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 21. Our program will be a compilation of music and words—and, yes, even dance—from several of our past observances. You will see survivors accompanied by students in lighting the six candles of remembrance. The centerpiece of our observance is the program of video, music, and dance created in 2011 by our graduating Holocaust history minors. It testifies to the abiding power of Holocaust memory and, in these dark times, it is a message of hope and humanity. We extend our gratitude to all those who have participated in our past events and express our thanks to Rabbi Elie Spitz and Dean Gail Stearns for the new reflections they have recorded.
In shared affirmation of Holocaust memory, humanity, and hope,
Marilyn Harran, Ph.D.
Director, Rodgers Center for Holocaust Education and
Stern Chair in Holocaust Education