Emotion, discovery, enthusiasm, all the ingredients needed for a timeless moment, came together to turn this trip into an unforgettable experience.
Between a visit to the old city of Jerusalem and before a conference with the artist Kichka at the Crown Plaza Hotel, we had the privilege of meetings a few of the participants. They were moved and delighted.
“This trip has been a blessing because it allows us to realize how proud we can be of this country! Israel is the promised land, period,” declares Emilienne from Lyon, who remembers that, as a child, she would hide in the bathroom to eat her Pesach matzo, convinced that it is a good idea to be discrete when you are a little Jewish girl.
“When you arrive here, you are choked by a profound emotion. Israel is fundamental for me,” explains Gérard, born in Marseille, who nevertheless insists on being secular. When he talks about the escape of this family from Vaucluse, his tears never stop. “It is others that made me Jewish since my family was not particularly attached to Judaism.” As he grew older, this man felt the need to know, who grew up “with unnamed troubles.”
They are different but share a common history.
Their family was decimated. They grew up with absences, secrets and unsaid matters. A heavy history imprints trauma that characterize hidden children. Bouncing between temporary houses in temporary foster homes, they share this insecurity that enveloped their childhood. Yet, they are there, stout-hearted, curious and grateful. Thanks to the services for listening and guidance provided to survivors of the Holocaust and their children by “Passarelle”, which was founded in 2002 by the FSJU, they meet regularly, each in their part of France, and participate in activities, surrounded by guidance professionals. Together, visiting Israel was part of their dream. The FSJU was there to overcoming the logistic and financial challenge with a contribution from the FMS. Conscious of the importance of this need, so important for those whose belonging to the Jewish people could have cost them their lives, FSJU Israel, in partnership with the Israeli Experience, coordinated the organization of this amazing trip. “Great work was accomplished with attention to the needs and wants of the participants,” explained the director of Passarelle, Andrée Katz.
From Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, passing thorough Haifa or Masada, the group benefited from a complete tour of the country they cherish so much with nothing held back.
“This voyage was a complete success at all levels. The reinforcement of the link between Holocaust survivors and Israel represents the future of the Jewish people. That is the beautiful message that the FSJU wants to transmit to future generations,” indicates Myriam Fedida.