Survivor of Holocaust undegoes bar mitzvah


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This story just came out in a local paper and I wanted to share it for any that has not seen it. In Sacramento, California a 78 year old man, who survived the holocaust is finally able to go through his bar mitzvah ceremony .... here is part of the story:
"A little nervous and plenty excited, Bernie Marks practiced Torah chanting for his upcoming bar mitzvah ceremony.(which already took place on September 20) Marks is 78 - a Holocaust survivor. When he was 13 - before his family was taken to Auschwitz concentration camp - he lived in a Jewish ghetto in Poland under the rule of Nazi soldiers, who forbit Jewish religious practices. Reading from a Torah that also survived the Holocaust, a moist-eyed Marks chanted to a soulful melody taught him by his late grandfather Jakub Menachem Makowski. ....for years, older men weren't afforded the opportunity because it wasn't traditional. But times have changed, and the local synagogue is more progressive. Marks speaks 10 languages and was trained by his grandfathers who were both rabbis. He was born in Lodz, Poland." The rest of the news article describes what happened in 1939 when the Nazis invaded Poland and in 1944 when he and his family were shipped to Auschwitz. The article ends with "He sounds like the cantors of Eastern Europe." and "Marks said age is only a state of mind, the bar mitzvah was something I was supposed to have in 1942. For years I had this desire - this is my destiny." The article was in "The Sacramento Bee" September 11, 2008 written by Stephen Magagnini if anyone is interested in the whole story. Aloha nui, pohaikawahine