Ben Shapiro to Deliver 2016 Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture

Ariel’s high school graduation picture from Yeshiva Gedolah, Los Angeles, June 1998.

Ariel’s high school graduation picture from Yeshiva Gedolah, Los Angeles, June 1998.

You are all invited to The Thirteenth Annual Ariel Avrech ZT’L Memorial Lecture that will take place Sunday, May 22, 2016, at 10 AM, followed by brunch.

For those unable to attend the lecture will be posted here at Seraphic Secret.

Karen and I are delighted to announce that our friend Ben Shapiro will deliver this year’s lecture, “How You Can Save Israel.”

Ben Shapiro

Ben Shapiro

A few days ago, the fascist left at Cal Sate tried to silence my friend Ben Shapiro.

Ben was invited to speak by a registered student group, Young Americans for Freedom, but was then disinvited by the Cal State President, William A. Covino.

But anyone who knows Ben knows that he is not going to be intimidated by a mob of racists,  nor by a spineless University president.

Ben showed up with security personnel—there was a Jew-hating lynch mob waiting for him—and delivered his speech, “When Diversity Becomes a Problem.”

You see, Conservatives actually believe in free speech. And the left, which is the Democrat Socialist party of America, is a totalitarian movement that seeks to stifle liberty by labeling any speech they don’t agree with as hate speech.

The left’s version of diversity is Maoist political conformity.

You can read about Ben’s brave stand at Cal State here

Karen and I are proud that Ben Shapiro will be the next speaker memorializing our beloved son, Ariel Chaim.

We did not suddenly decide to invite Ben in order to court attention. In fact, Karen and I extended our invitation to Ben over a year ago. It has been obvious to us that Ben, an Orthodox Jew, represents the future of the Conservative movement in America.

The location of the lecture will be published as we get closer to the event.

When we memorialize our beloved son 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.

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 expressions of joy and love that appear in the blessing recited at Jewish weddings: Gilah, Rinah, Ditzah, Chedvah, Ahavah 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.

Karen hugs Ariel on his first day as a student at Ner Israel Rabbinical Academy, Baltimore, 1998.

Karen hugs Ariel on his first day as a student at Ner Israel Rabbinical Academy, Baltimore, 1998.

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  1. pkoning
    Posted March 3, 2016 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    I’m on the wrong coast to attend, but as with all the preceding lectures, I’m looking forward to listening to the audio file.

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  2. Patrick Howard
    Posted March 3, 2016 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    Wow! Ben Shapiro has a first class mind, and has been writing super commonsense conservative commentary for years.

    Great catch!

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  3. CJReott
    Posted March 2, 2016 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Robert, thank you for the invitation. My husband and I would very much like to attend to pay tribute to your son. We also would be most grateful to hear Mr. Shapiro’s lecture. Reading your blog and being in contact for several years I feel as if I know you and your family, albeit vicariously. As you know we are Christians and continue to support Israel. Thank you again, Claudia

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    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted March 3, 2016 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      We welcome you and all our Christian friends. Thanks so much for your kind words.

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  4. Barry
    Posted March 2, 2016 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    I don’t know anything about any of this, but I took a long look at Ariel’s picture, and sweetness seems to shine from it.

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  5. kishke
    Posted March 1, 2016 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    What a good idea. Ben Shapiro is a very impressive guy, to say the least.

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