By Molly LaVoe || Contributing Writer
On Tuesday, March 31st from 9 am to 6 pm in the Steinman College Center Atrium, the F&M Holocaust Education and Remembrance Committee will be hosting F&M’s Reading of the Names, a Holocaust Remembrance Vigil Reading. We will recite the names of individuals who perished during the Holocaust. The purpose of the event is to keep the spirits and memories alive of the individuals who passed away during the atrocities of the Holocaust. The committee invites all individuals and organizations to get involved in this event by reading names during ten minute slots. People can sign-up to read names with a group or by themselves. This event is an opportunity for the F&M community to come together to raise awareness and combat anti-semitism and other forms of discrimination towards minority groups that still exist today. The sign up page is accessible through this link: https://calendar.google.com/calendar/selfsched?sstoken=UUZwdDVtZ2lXVTRqfGRlZmF1bHR8ODg4NzdmNDkyYzI4YjA3YWM5MmY5ODAwN2NkYzc5NWI
Directions for the link: (**Once you open the link, press “Next available appointment slot on Mar 31, 2020. You will then be able to scroll over the available time slots. Once you sign up, the event will automatically be added to your google calendar**)
This event comes at a very important time, as this year marks the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the Nazis’ deadliest concentration camp. This year marks one of the last anniversaries that many survivors will be alive to share their first-hand testimonies. With that being said, our generation will be the last generation to meet Holocaust survivors. Many people worry that the horrors of the Holocaust will be forgotten once there are no longer any survivors left. To ensure their stories are never forgotten, it is the duty of the next generation to pass down their stories. It is imperative to teach future generations about mass genocides so they will become aware of the warning signs and how they can take an active role in standing up against hatred and discrimination. With the rise in antisemitic attacks, Holocaust education is more crucial than ever to ensure history does not repeat itself. Consequently, Holocaust education is not just about reflecting on the past but also learning about how to take an active role in combatting rising anti-semitism in the world today.
While reading the names seems like a simple task, it means the world to relatives of the victims and members of different communities affected by the Holocaust. There is so much value in reading the names because every name has a story behind it. The name a person may be reading might be the name of a toddler who never had the opportunity to walk or talk. They never had the opportunity to live to their next birthday or to see their wedding day. They had no choice where they would go or who they would become. As members of the F&M community, we have the ability to make choices every day. We get to choose the kind of people we will be. It is up to us to be the people they never could be. We must tell their stories to ensure that this never happens again. Take ten minutes out of your day to recite the names of individuals who never had the opportunity to live out their lives due to blatant hatred. Help keep their memories alive. If you have any questions regarding the event or the Holocaust Education and Remembrance Committee, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org
First Year Molly LaVoe is a Contributing Writer. Her email is email@example.com