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Annual Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture

When we memorialize Ariel, we not only remember the past, we imagine a future that might have been.

Had he lived, Ariel would be in the prime of his life.ariel-chaim-avrech-sidebar-logo

We imagine him, married to a lovely and modest young woman, perhaps with several of the six daughters he wished for, all named for the Jewish expressions of joy: Gilah, Rena, Ditzah, Chedvah, Reah, Shalom, and Reut.

Always sensitive to the needs of others, but immersed in learning Torah, Ariel was pursuing a degree in Special Education. But he aspired for more and tormented himself at the age of twenty pondering a choice of career, even when in the throes of critical illness.

Ariel never doubted that he would survive. He sincerely believed that his biggest challenge was finding his life’s path. The physical challenges were incidental compared to the task of learning, and spiritual growth.

Ariel raised our family to a higher level of holiness. He inspired his sisters with his sweet humility and kindness which guided them in choosing their husbands, men he would embrace as brothers.

We feel diminished by his loss, for he was a beacon illuminating our family with a special light. From the time Ariel was born, we always said, “Ariel is special.” We will continue to declare it every day, and especially on the day of his memorial lecture.

Contrary to all logic, as time passes, our memories of Ariel have become more vivid. The images of every stage of his life are easier to evoke in all nuance and detail.

This is a mixed blessing since it intensifies our longing for his smile, his steadfastness, his intelligence and kindness. Yet the enrichment of memory strengthens his role in our family as a luminous spirit, guiding us in the corporeal world.

His goodness, his Torah scholarship and modest piety are a constant reminder of what we should all strive for in our lives.

Indeed, Ariel’s absence has been transformed into a deeply felt presence.

Click here for the Memorial Lecture Audio Archive or watch below

2023: Rabbi David Singer

2022: Rabbi Avi Stewart

2018: Jackie Danicki

2017: Daniel Greenfield

2016: Ben Shapiro

2015:  Larry Elder

2014: Michael Medved 

2013: David Horowitz

2012: Joel B. Pollak

2011: Yossi Klein Halevi

2010: Dennis Prager

2009: Rabbi Steven Pruzansky

2008: Rabbi Dr. Gil S. Perl

Mon, July 22 2024 16 Tammuz 5784