When I was young I found out that my grandmother was Jewish, but I didn't know how to be Jewish. My parents do not practice Judaism. When I was little I started to notice symbols that were Jewish like the hamsa, Star of David, and menorah. I was always asking questions about Judaism, but my mother did not know the answers.
Today, we visited arguably the two most emotionally and physically draining sites in all of Israel, covering everything from the horrific events of the Holocaust to the heroic tales of Michael Levin... Shadowing the day in a somber mist.
Yesterday evening, over 350 teens on BBYO Passport experiences in Israel convened to celebrate their being together in the Jewish Homeland this summer. True to form, the event drew together an international community of Jewish teens from the USA, Canada, Europe and Latin America. Our ILSI participants, Ryan Dishell and Maya Guthman, gave the following speech at the event, and we wanted to share it with everyone who wasn't there.
It's the end of a long, hot, sunny day here in Israel on ILSI 2013. The madrichim are going around to do room checks as we all get ready to rest up for our long day tomorrow- but none of that really matters because today was an amazing day.