Yom Sheini, 22 Tishri 5780
Shemini Azeret Monday, 21 October 2019
Bury St Edmunds hosts Holocaust Memorial Day Service

27th January 2015
Bury Free Press

A poignant reminder of the atrocities of the Holocaust and other past genocides was unveiled in Bury St Edmunds today.

Crowds gathered in the Abbey Gardens for the town’s annual Holocaust Memorial Day Service which coincided with the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz and marked 21 years since the Rwandan Genocide and 20 years since Bosnia’s Srebrenica Massacre.

The Reverend Canon Matthew Vernon, sub-dean of St Edmundsbury Cathedral, said: “Here in peaceful Bury St Edmunds these appalling events can seem like a world away. So it’s our responsibility to use our imagination and to make that connection because all humanity is connected and we are all affected by these events.”

The new Peace Garden, formally opened today by Rabbi Danny Rich, chief executive of Liberal Judaism, provided a dignified setting for the service and will, it is hoped, help ‘keep the memory alive’ - the theme of this year’s service.

A stainless steel teardrop sculpture stands a metre and a half tall at the centre of the garden, surrounded by 57 cobble stones - one for each of the 57 Jews murdered in Bury on Palm Sunday in 1190 - and two benches to allow visitors a place for quiet reflection.

Rabbi Rich said the garden represented ‘the triumph of hope’ and ‘the possibility that hate can be overcome by goodwill, love and appreciation that it is one creator who created every human being and that every human soul - whether Jew or Christian or Muslim or Hindu or Sikh or of no faith - is as valuable as the next one’.

Addressing the many school children at the service, he said: “It’s important that we remind ourselves of those memories because the one thing we hope that you children will learn from history is to do better than we’ve done, that your generation and those who come after you will learn from the mistakes that previous generations have made and will create the type of world in which, ironically, a peace garden won’t be needed.”  Read more