The atrocities of the Holocaust and the courage of those who have spoken out against persecution will be remembered at a multi-faith service in the Tower Gardens at noon on Sunday 29 January.
The service will be attended by Borough Mayor Cllr. Colin Sampson, Leader of the Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, Cllr. Nick Daubney, civic dignitaries, members of the Muslim, Jewish and Christian faiths, KLARS (King’s Lynn Area Settlement Support), the Soroptomists and St Martha's Roman Catholic School. Together these individuals and the communities they represent will make a united stand against violence and prejudice and mark Holocaust Memorial Day.
Janie Codona, whose work to promote understanding and raise awareness of issues affecting the traveller community earned her an MBE this year, will give a special reading. Further readings will follow, wreathes will be laid and all those attending will be invited to light a candle in honour of those who lost their lives in the Holocaust and other genocides and as a symbol of their commitment to work towards a democratic society. St Martha's choir will perform and the service will end with a blessing in English and Hebrew. Anyone is welcome to attend.
Holocaust Memorial Day marks the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau on January 27 1945. Each year the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust encourages people to take the opportunity to reflect upon the terrible consequences of the persecution that led to the Holocaust, remember the victims of this atrocity and more recent genocides and to learn the lessons that these tragedies have to teach us about the impact of intolerance and discrimination of any form. The day helps to provide a platform to promote understanding of the fundamental human rights that were adopted as a response to the Holocaust and provides an opportunity to celebrate the strength and resilience of the human spirit.
The theme of this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day is Speak Out Speak Up. It invites people to reflect upon the way that silence and complicity allows persecution to thrive and encourages people to have the courage to oppose actions that they know to be wrong.
Borough Mayor Cllr. Colin Sampson said, “I visited Belsen twice in the late 1970s, when my TA unit was on exercise in Germany, and was deeply moved by the atmosphere of the memorial. There really was no birdsong, or even birds, within the site.
"Unfortunately, dreadful events, similar to what we know as the Holocaust, are happening all over the world even now. Many of them barely make the headlines any more. However, that only makes our Holocaust Memorial Day all the more important, especially with this year’s theme of Speak Out, Speak Up. Those that do must receive more support from our supposed civilised society across the world so that one day this is just a Memorial Day as a reminder of the past and not a commentary on current events.
I urge all of you to try to join us in Tower Gardens at noon on Sunday 29 January 2012."
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