Vatican City, Jan 27, 2020 / 04:30 am
Pope Francis has asked for people to spend a moment in prayer and recollection on Monday for International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
January 27 marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.
Between 1940 and 1945, the Nazi regime murdered 1.1 million people in Auschwitz, many killed in the gas chambers immediately upon arrival at the camp. Six million Jews died in the Holocaust.
“In the face of this huge tragedy, this atrocity, indifference is not admissible and memory is a must,” Pope Francis said Jan. 26 in his Angelus address.
The pope invited each person to spend a moment on the anniversary in prayer and recollection with “each person saying in his own heart: ‘never again, never again!’”
In a meeting with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish human rights organization, last week Pope Francis recalled his visit to the Nazi concentration camp in Poland in 2016:
“I went there to reflect and to pray in silence. In our world, with its whirlwind of activity, we find it hard to pause, to look within and to listen in silence to the plea of suffering humanity.”
“If we lose our memory, we destroy our future. May the anniversary of the unspeakable cruelty that humanity learned of 75 years ago serve as a summons to pause, to be still and to remember. We need to do this, lest we become indifferent,” Pope Francis said.