International Holocaust Remembrance Day
A day for the Church in Europe to Learn from History
January 27 has been declared the International Holocaust Remembrance Day both by the European Union and the United Nations.
The objective of this initiative is to make the week leading up to January 27 also a week of remembrance, and pro-active action against anti-Semitism, for the church in Europe. What role did the church play in Europe in the 1930’s? What role could we play today in order NOT to repeat the mistakes of the past? Are the Jewish people still threatened to destruction today? Listen to some voices from 2006.
- Iranian president Ahmadinejad openly questioning the existence of Holocaust and asking for Israel to be “wiped off the map.”
- Norwegian award winning author Jostein Gaarder stating that “Israel has lost its right to exist.”
- Protesters in the streets of Europe asking for “Death to the Jews.”
- The Palestinian Hamas lead government calling for “the destruction of Israel.”
Sadly to say, the old lies of the past are still being repeated in Europe today and even the historical facts of the Holocaust are denied, questioned, and put in to doubt.
What can we do about it?
Raise awareness in our church communities in Europe. History shows that not even Christians are immune against the deadly virus of anti-Semitism.
Inform and educate the church about the Holocaust, but also about the parallels to our time when world leaders are again calling for the destruction of the Jewish state, and anti-Semitism is on the rise in Europe.
Speak out about the dangers of anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism in the corridors of power in the European Union and in our national capitals. Today European Coalition for Israel and its member organizations are providing Christians with a platform to speak out and take action effectively.
How can you take part in this campaign?
Make the International Holocaust Day a day of remembrance in your church. Take a moment in the Sunday service on January 28 to pray and raise awareness of the lessons of the past and the challenges of today. “Learn from History” will provide you with speaking points, background material, and a DVD about how Christians today are raising their voices against anti-Semitism and are promoting better relations between Europe and Israel.
You can also organize a special event to commemorate the victims of Shoah (the Holocaust). The website will provide you with material on how you can do this practically.
Sign up today adopt January 27 as a day of remembrance in your church. Our goal is to have churches in each of the 25 member states signing up to take part in the campaign. During the Remembrance event we will also provide you with an opportunity to financially support the work which is today carried out by European Coalition for Israel to fight anti-Semitism and improve relations between Europe and Israel.
The multilingual website has now been launched and will contain these resources:
- Introduction to the Holocaust week (this page, above)
- Downloadables such as speaking points, background facts, outline for sermons, etc.
- A special section where each church can add its name to pledge, “we want to learn from history.”
The “Learn from History” campaign is being initiated by the European Coalition for Israel in collaboration with a leadership team consisting of the following pastors:
- Colin Dye, Pastor, Kensington Temple London, United Kingdom
- Ulf Ekman, Pastor, Word of Life, Uppsala, Sweden
- Ingolf Ellssel, Pastor and Chairman of Pentecostal European Fellowship
- Johannes Fichtenbauer, Chief Deacon, Catholic Diocease of Vienna, Austria
- Willem Glashouwer, Reverend, Reformed Church of the Netherlands, Chairman ECI
- Wolfhard Margies, Pastor, Church on the Way, Berlin Germany