PEABODY — Holocaust survivors, their families, local veterans, students and others gathered at Peabody High last night for an annual interfaith service to pause, reflect and remember those who died in the Holocaust, as well as to praise two students for their work as peacemakers.
A highlight of the event is when Holocaust survivors and student “Legacy Partners” who represent them in their classrooms participate in a candle-lighting ceremony. The featured speaker last night was Rena Finder, a Holocaust survivor on Schindler’s List who talked about how “One Person Can Make a Difference.” Finder was also presented with The Holocaust Center Service Award.
Two seventh-graders from the Brookwood School were also honored with the third annual Sonia Schreiber Weitz Upstander Award, which is given to students in grades seven to 12 who take “action on behalf of another against prejudice, hatred or indifference.”
The Gordon College Women’s Choir performed, and Cantor Elana Rozenfield of Swampscott offered memorial prayers.
The program is sponsored by The Holocaust Center Boston North, Christians & Jews United for Israel, the City of Peabody and a variety of other local community groups, schools and temples.
Across the United States this week, cities and towns will sign proclamations and conduct services to remember victims of the Holocaust. At 8 a.m. on Holocaust Memorial Day in Israel, air raid sirens sound throughout the streets and all activity ceases for two minutes of silence to remember the 6 million Jews killed between 1933 and 1945.
You can reach John Castelluccio at 978-338-2527, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter at @SNjcastelluccio.