The most beautiful place in Israel is in the Holocaust museum.
Even among all the landscapes and the holy sites, the children’s memorial tops everything.
It’s a simple arrangement: a winding pathway in a room full of mirrors and candles. The mirrors reflect both each other and the flitting of the candles, creating a twinkling and sparkling landscape. It’s difficult to navigate because it’s hard to tell where reflections begin and end.
It’s like walking among the stars.
The Israeli relationship with the Holocaust is obviously a unique one, and our visit to the museum and memorial showed that. The museum is educational and does not shy away from showing the actual horrors of the Holocaust.
But it also ensure its visitors find beauty in these horrors. It highlights the stories that brought out the good in people. It shows how even in the midst of it all people looked forward with hope.
Still, these stories bring a gut-wrenching kind of pain. They are difficult to hear. They are supposed to be.
Understanding the Holocaust means preventing it’s repetition.
Yesterday was our last day in Jerusalem. We started the day at the Temple Mount. Even though it’s a holy site for Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, it is currently under Muslism control. Because of this, we were restricted on what we could do, say, and wear while on the site.
Being unable to openly pray is not something I’m used to, but it’s a reality for many people around the world. Experiencing it myself, even for a few moments, puts into perspective how difficult it is for some Christians and how much faith they actually have.
Our group left Jerusalem this morning and is now sitting Tel Aviv. Most of us are working on our stories.
We fly out tomorrow morning. Our time is coming to a close, but the impact is not. There is still more time to worship, to pray, to write. We will make the most of it.