Bennett with Torah scroll saved from Holocaust

Education Minister Bennett holds Torah scroll that survived Holocaust, says Holocaust survival testimony to Israel's greatness.

Yoni Kempinski, Poland ,

Naftali Bennett holds Torah scroll in Poland
Naftali Bennett holds Torah scroll in Poland
Yoni Kempinski

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday will lead the 29th March of the Living while holding a Torah scroll in his arms.

The Torah scroll survived the Holocaust and was restored after being nearly destroyed by the Nazis.

It was written before the First World War broke out, and served the Transylvanian Jewish community until Romanian Jewry was wiped out by the Nazis.

After it sat for decades beneath the ruins of the Bucharest synagogue, the "Menorah" association led by Moshe Moskowitz brought the Torah scroll to Israel. It was restored by the Machon Ot, and now serves synagogues in Judea and Samaria.

Moskowitz, who is one of the founders of Gush Etzion, acceded to Bennett's request to bring the Torah scroll with him to the 2017 March of the Living from Auschwitz to Birkenau.

"The possibility of holding this Torah scroll, which itself is a survivor of the Nazis, while standing together with dozens of Holocaust survivors, hundreds of IDF soldiers, the families of terror victims and injured IDF soldiers, and thousands of Jewish youth from around the world - is itself proof of Israel's spiritual greatness and the fact that we are an eternal people," Bennett said.

"In this Torah scroll, which I am holding now, it says, 'The blood of your brethren is screaming to Me from the earth.' This is what I feel now, when I hold this Torah scroll, a scroll which saw so many horrors, which saw the worst period in Jewish history. Yet, this scroll survived and merited to arrive in Israel.

"Today, standing in Auschwitz, we must remember that we have received our greatest gift, the gift of the State of Israel."

Naftali Bennett holds Torah scroll outside Auschwitz
Yoni Kempinski