|Svetlana with her UBA Arad angels|
For four months during the period of their matriculation exams and their summer vacation, the girls assumed the roles of parents of the bride and groom, wedding planner, caterer, florist and dressmaker. They even raised the money needed to buy wedding presents: all the household goods the young couple would need to establish
On the night of the wedding, everyone in attendance was touched by the spirit of love and chesed that filled the air. Rabbi Yaakov Mendelson, Arad's Chabad rabbi who officiated at the wedding, compared Moshe and Svetlana to Avraham Avinu and Sarah Imenu in Parshat Lech Lecha, leaving the land of their birth to come to Eretz Yisrael, the homeland of every Jew for all time.
The celebration lasted late into the night, and as it wound down close to midnight, Moshe and Svetlana took the microphone to thank the Ulpana girls for what they had done for them: "We have no words to describe how excited and thankful we are that so many people took us into their hearts and worked so hard to make this such a joyous occasion. The warmth and caring you showed us in preparing this wedding is proof that we made the right decision to make Aliyah. This is where we belong, with our people. This is our home. We had to come here to meet our guardian angels."
View a video clip of the wedding ceremony