In response to the senseless tragedy at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, the Stella K. Abraham High School for Girls’ NCSY JUMP Team undertook a day of learning and spiritual growth on Monday, December 24. In the merit of those children and adults whose lives were taken in the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, the JUMP Team’s “Umeirim es Haolam,” (Lighting Up the World) brought each grade together in groups of five for 20 minutes of in-depth learning—for the 20 innocent children who were killed—with a compilation of various sources focusing on the concepts of finding light in times of darkness and how teachers are like parents. Not a sound was heard when the eulogy of Noah Samuel Pozner, the youngest of the victims, was read aloud and a student-produced video on the tragedy was shown. A memorial table was set up in the long hallway known as the “bowling alley,” together with another table for students to write letters to the mourners in Newtown.
“We are a light unto the nations,” said the leaders, “and we turn to Hashem. In this time of unbearable loss, we looked for something unique to Judaism for a zechus of these lives—learning Torah.” Many students wore green, which was the school color of Sandy Hook Elementary School, to show solidarity.
Credit goes to Rachel Lunzer, a former SKA student, who conceived of the 20/20 program concept and SKA NCSY team leaders, Daniella Bodek, Margalit Graber, Raizy Joseph, Rebecca Kellner, and Alexandra Rubin, who worked so hard to make this program a very meaningful one. v