Park East Synagogue and the United Nations hosted an International Holocaust Remembrance virtual service marking the 76th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on January 25, 2021. UN Secretary-General António Guterres and Rabbi Arthur Schneier, Senior Rabbi at Park East Synagogue and founder and President of the Appeal of Conscience foundation, delivered remarks. The service included music by Chief Cantor Yitzchak Meir Helfgot, Cantor Benny Rogosnitzky and the Park East Synagogue Choir, led by Conductor Maestro Russell Ger, and the participation of students at Rabbi Arthur Schneier Park East Day School and the UN diplomatic corps.
Rabbi Arthur Schneier pointed to the rise of hate and anti-Semitism in the world today and underscored the importance of Holocaust education in schools, stating, “Children are not born with hatred. They are taught how to hate. When infected, they become carriers of hatred. The antidote is education, education, education.”
In his remarks, UN Secretary-General António Guterres encouraged “coordinated global action, on the scale of the threat we face, to build an alliance against the growth and spread of neo-Nazism and white supremacy, and to fight propaganda and disinformation… Prevention is key to the fight against anti-Semitism, and I sincerely thank Rabbi Schneier and all those who work with and for the Appeal of Conscience Foundation for their efforts to promote interfaith understanding.”