A SERVICE to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) took place in Worthing on Monday.
Around 40 people attended the service held at the Tree of Life at Beach House Park, Worthing, which was organised by Councillor Tom Wye.
HMD recognises that the Holocaust was a tragically defining episode of the 20th Century and provides a national mark of respect for all victims of Nazi persecution.
Worthing’s Statement of Commitment was read out by Worthing mayor, Bob Smytherman, who also laid a wreath at the foot of the Tree of Life while Lancing College Choir performed a specially commissioned song called ‘Never Again’.
Cllr Smytherman said: “I was hugely proud to attend and reaffirm the borough council’s Statement of Commitment signed on January 27, 2004.
“It was a truly moving occasion which was attended by local people joining together for this important commemoration.
“What made the occasion truly special personally, were the words of peace from my Chaplain Father Chris Benyon and Roger Berlin, who said Kaddish and the young people from Lancing College Choir leading the singing.”
Mr Berlin, who also spoke on the theme of ‘journeys’, said: “The only way to prevent another Holocaust, another massacre of the innocents, is to constantly remind ourselves what has been and what must never happen again.
“Only by knowing what has happened before can we prevent another tragedy. That is why an annual Holocaust Memorial Day is so important.”
Cllr Wye said: “We can learn how journeys themselves became part of genocide, and how the journeys undertaken were often experiences of persecution and terror for so many people who suffered in the Holocaust, under Nazi Persecution and in the subsequent genocides.
“I was really pleased with how the service went, we had great feedback and it was very apt and appropriate to have the Lancing choir singing.
“We asked all present at the service to write their own message to tie onto the Tree of Life.”