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Shabbat Shalom, Australia!

I have written several times about competitors who gave up their participation in international competitions in order to honor the sanctity of the Shabbat. This story is exceptional:
The robotics team of the Amit Junior High for boys in Modi'in is now in Australia, in the First Lego League competition, together with 80 other delegations. They will all present the robots that they designed and created during the past year. The competition opened yesterday, Thursday, and will be over on Sunday. The team members, together with their teacher Tzachi Green, have decided that they will abstain from  competing  on the Shabbat. The organizers agreed to move some of the missions to Friday for their sake. Just prior to the beginning of the Shabbat, the students will place a big sign near their robot: "Why aren't we here today? Because today is Shabbat, Judaism's day of rest". They also added a code that, when scanned, plays a short video in English about the meaning and significance of Shabbat.
The school principal, Lior HaLevi, wrote a personal letter to his students this week: "When I saw the sign that you prepared for Shabbat, I was moved and became full of pride. You might lose a few points in the competition, but for me - you won. We have heard about Kiddush HaShem and Messirut Nefesh (self-sacrifice) in previous generations in tragic contexts of Jewish willingness to die for Judaism. We are happy to be living in a generation that is after the inquisition, after the decrees of annihilation, after the Shoah. Today, Messirut Nefesh is one of love, of giving up certain things in favor of holy values out of our sheer desire to do so, and not through coercion, of showing Shabbat as an important value to the whole world. You have merited to be such ambassadors of the Shabbat. Shabbat Shalom."


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