The weather this year was in our favor as we boarded over 150 Merrimack students onto four school buses for the short trip to Temple Emanuel of Andover for our annual Kristallnacht commemoration, “Shattered Glass, Shattered Lives.” Our guest speaker was Prof. Susannah Heschel, chair of Jewish Studies at Dartmouth College and daughter of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel. Her topic was “The Holocaust, the Hebrew Prophets and the Civil Rights Movement.”
This moving service, which included music from the Merrimack Concert Choir under the direction of Dr. Hugh Hinton, as well as readings from students Mary Lavallee and Tony Munzing, was recorded on videotape and can be viewed here.
Silence and shattered glass can each evoke joy and horror. We moved between those realms and appreciated the silence before Creation while we were later reviled by the silent indifference of neighbors and nations that gave rise to the Holocaust.
As we honored the victims and survivors of several modern genocides, we pledged together to break the silence that can lead to such atrocities.
Many thanks to Rabbi Robert Goldstein and the Temple Emanuel community for hosting, to Prof. Susannah Heschel for her wise and impactful reflection, to the Merrimack Concert Choir and Dr. Hugh Hinton for their beautiful music, to Roberta Braverman for underwriting this program, and to all of our students and professors who continue to support this annual commemoration.