JOLT Israel
NCSY JOLT Israel!!! Absolutely Amazing Day #6
Shalom From the Holy Land! I hope this email finds you well! We had such an awesome day today. I am so excited to tell you about our day. We had an early wakeup to accommodate our drive up North for our rappelling hike. After davening and a delicious breakfast, we started our drive to Ma'arat HaKeshet. We began by standing at a monument for two Israeli soldiers kidnapped and killed by Hezbollah. We spoke about Gevurah and what real courage means. It was a meaningful moment and one that resinated with the kids. From there we went to the rappelling spot. If you have never been there before, it is an absolutely beautiful snapshot of nature. The word Keshet means rainbow, and the reason why the place we were at is called "HaKeshet" is because there is a natural stone bow that drops down into a cave. We rappelled down into the cave which is about a 20 Meter drop. It was exhilarating and really pushed many of the kids out of their comfort zone which is exactly what we tried to achieve. After everyone made it down, we began our decent through dirt, rocks and mountain goat droppings (The kids loved that part). Then it was an ascent back up to the parking lot. Tired, dirty and smelly we made our way to a nearby Kibbutz that had fresh pizza cooking in outdoor brick ovens. There were personal pizza pies topped with onion, garlic, corn, tuna, pesto, zhatar…And of course some juicy, sweet and refreshingly cold Israeli watermelon. After a Bracha Achrona we got back on the boat and went to our next stop, Acco. It was there that we were once again introduced to the story of Jewish courage and bravery to truly inculcate the message of leadership. We spent about an hour touring the old British prison. It was there that we read bio's of some of the Jews who were hung by the British in 1947. One of the more powerful moments was when we all stood in the room where these Jews were hung and we said a Kel Ma'aleh as well as snag the Hatkivah together. Powerful…. After Acco, we headed home but we thought it was important to daven Mincha somewhere powerful. We decided on the Kever of Rebbe Meir Ba'al HaNeis. Rebbe Meir was a Tanna and a true leader of the Jewish people. What better way to end our day about leadership than davening at the Holy Kever of this Tzaddik. After Mincha we got on the bus and went back to our hotel. We ate a delicious dinner, davened Ma'ariv, went through tomorrow and the kids broke up in tot heir learning groups. I want to tell you that it is really quite impressive to watch the way the kids learn each night. As we continue to get more comfortable with each other more and more kids are coming up to the Advisors and asking them questions about Halacha and other issues of Jewish philosophy. It is really awesome to watch this play out. Tomorrow is a very early wake up, but the kids have a two and a half hour ride to Jerusalem so they will all be sleeping on the way. Tomorrow is our training day with our counterparts from Zichron Menachem. It's an important day and one which will really set the stage for next week. Of course, we can't go into our holiest city and not visit our holiest place. So we will be making a quick stop at the Kotel prior to our workshop. I feel that it's totally appropriate and necessary. From there we will be going on to Bayit VeGan. On a side not, I know I said it before, but it is work repeating. Our advisors are so amazing! They are fantastic with the kids and each and every one of them brings something very unique to the table. We are constantly doing Shtick, laughing, singing… It's so great!!!! Please don't forget to follow NCSY JOLT Israel on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. I want you to see the smiles! If you have any questions place feel free to reach out as always. I am available for anything and everything. I will most probably not be writing tomorrow night due to Yom NCSY, but I will definitely write before Shabbos. Have a great night. With deep brachos from the Holy land of Israel! -Rabbi Weinberg  
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