2020 (a) – Holocaust Memorial Day

This year it took place on Monday, 27 January. This is a brief report on the event, and the speeches are reported in full on page 2.

On entering, it was good to see work produced by local children, presented on a screen using a digital projector. All of the pictures are at the bottom of this page, as there were so many that there would be too much scrolling to get to the description. Note that you can click on those pictures to view them in a gallery. The quality of my photographs is not great, but you can see how well the children worked to show that they understand at least something of this dreadful issue.

The day’s programme is below. It is quite clear but if you prefer, click to see a larger version.

The event began with Rev’d Evans. After his welcome he described the importance of this day, which is not just to remember, but to pass the understanding to future generations. Here is a quotation from his speech:

My understanding of the work of the Holocaust Memorial Organisation is that its primary objective is to ensure that we never, ever forget what happened under the Nazi regime to the Jewish people. And as time goes on and people die, there’s a risk that memories are lost. And so thank you to you younger people for coming. 

Rabbi Michaels then spoke for some minutes. It was thought-provoking and after giving some historical background he stressed the importance of standing together – the theme for today. He quoted this prayer from Pastor Niemöller, as it describes how we all can help to stop prejudice of all kinds by standing together to speak up against it:

First they came for the communists and I did not speak out because I was not a communist. Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. And then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. And then they came for me. But there was no one left to speak out for me.

The whole speech can be read on page 2 of this report.

Then came the award of certificates for the poems and the artwork produced by local children. Their art is at the bottom of this page.

Proud teacher and some of the winners

Finally, some pictures at the Memorial Ceremony on the Quomps. Click for larger versions. The gentleman with the chain is George Farquhar, representing BCP Council.

(Go to complete speeches on Page 2)