To Learn, To Feel, To Remember, To Act.

The 2014 Yom Hashoah commemoration was held last Sunday evening at  Congregation Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem (on Baily Rd in  Côte-Saint-Luc). The ceremony helps to perpetuate the memory of all those who were murdered during the Holocaust, and to honour the survivors. It reminds us of our collective responsibility to remember the Holocaust and to protect individuals and communities from oppression, hate, racism and discriminatory policies. This community-wide commemoration is  organized by the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre.

Israeli Consul General Joel Lion delivered a poignant message as he listed shocking accounts of 21 incidents of anti-Semitism occurring over the last two weeks around the world in places like New York City, Ohio, Kansas City, Ireland, Germany, Sweden, France and the Ukraine.

“History tells us that only an independent State of Israel will ensure that we do not have another Holocaust,” Lion stated.

The excellent programme book  set out the circumstances in 1944 Hungary. The theme was 1944 – and the trains kept going, spoke to the horrific events of 1944 and as a sub-theme, honour the memory of the Jews of Hungary, most of whom were deported and murdered in the space of a few months in that year. 

Focus was given to six survivors: Agnes Kent, Lilly Toth, Charles Akerman, Meier Schlomowitz, Daisy Gross and Joe Fellner and their stories from childhood days in Hungary. Their children and grandchildren surrounded them as each survivor lit a memorial candle, each symbolically representing a million lost lives.

Yom Hashoah begins a week of remembrance in Israel and throughout the diaspora, leading up to Yom Hazikaron (Remembrance Day for the fallen soldiers of Israel and those murdered at the hands of terrorists) and culminating the next day with Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel’s Independence Day.

Read more first hand reporting on Councillor Mike Cohen’s blog.