Our yearly Memorial in Bardejov was held on Wednesday June 27th. This year’s theme was inspired by the ceremony of the Israeli embassy in Bratislava honoring four people from Bardejov and its vicinity as Righteous Among the Nations.
After lighting of the memorial candles in front of the Name Tablets, people walked to the Old Synagogue to hear touching performances: Local students from Leonard Stockel High School initiated the ceremony with music from Schindler’s list and ended it with a Jewish traditional melody. The Children’s Choir from Modrá ZUŠ – Blue Art School in Bardejov have been engaging our emotions with their beautiful Hebrew singing since our first event in 2014 and they continue to inspire us this year as well. Ms. Orit Stieglitz, Executive Director of BJPC and Ms. Anna Humbert—our new Manager of Operations in Bardejov—read a speech by Emil Fish, the Founder and President of BJPC; and Vice-Mayor Vladimír Savčinský represented the City of Bardejov and gave an uplifting talk.
Indeed, Adam Bomba, Štefan Tarcala, Jozef Kisel and Vasiľ Kyjovský continue to be an inspiration for young people as we learned from the essays the students wrote for this year’s Essay Competition on the topic “Righteous Among the Nations – what makes them unique?“. Twenty essays were submitted by high school students from Bardejov, a significant increase in entries since previous years. Chairman of Community Organization in Bardejov, Mr. Jozef Jarina, thanked the students for their efforts and motivated them to continue discussing these issues so as to bring about a better future for all.
For the first time this year, we also held an Art Competition for High Schools on the same topic as the essays. The best interpretations of the theme combined with the quality of the art piece were considered by the committee when choosing the winners.
The event was attended by local Bardejov citizens, family members of Righteous Among the Nations from Bardejov, and guests from Slovakia and the United States. We are very grateful to all the participants and performers and for the ongoing support from the City and the teachers.