A special united service was held at the Greenside,
Maybole last Friday, January 27, to mark Holocaust Memorial Day. The
service was organised by Maybole Branch of the Royal British Legion
Scotland, marshaled by David Hunter and led by Rev Dave Whiteman. Fr
Stephen McGrattan and Rev David Jones were unable to attend and sent
their apologies. Rev Whiteman welcomed everyone saying, “We meet
this morning to remember those who lived and died through those
terrible days of the Holocaust.
We come today to remember
- lest we forget.” After reading from the book of Ecclesiastes
chapter 3 verses 1 – 8, he added, “Holocaust Memorial Day is held on
the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on January 27, 1945.
The word holocaust is taken from the Old Testament and it refers to
the complete destruction of something by fire. We come today to
remember the attempted complete destruction of the nation of Israel
by the Nazis in World War II. Names like Auschwitz, Belsen and
Treblenka remind us of the horrors of the death camps and quite
rightly we remember them.
But we should also
remember that the holocaust was not just against the Jews but it was
also against the intellectuals of whichever nation, the disabled and
the mentally ill were particular targets, homosexuals, gypsies; in
fact anyone who was part of a minority group was seen as a
legitimate target. Many people from our nation and indeed from
Scotland died in those dark days and we must remember them.
Holocaust Memorial Day was established in 2001, it is a national
event, hundreds of services are taking place around the country
including a service attended by Her Majesty the Queen at St James’
Today we remember the
holocaust. And today we remember that genocide is still happening.
Millions have died since World War II. We remember today places
like Rwanda, Cambodia, Serbia, the Congo, Iraq and many other
counties around the world where genocide has been a reality and we
must remember them and go on remembering them - so that these
terrible events are not repeated.
And today we renew our
commitment to combat racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia wherever we
may find it, and to commit ourselves to working for an inclusive,
caring and open society.” Pipe Sergeant Kevin McDermott then played
the lament and George Taylor laid a wreath on behalf of the Legion.
Standard bearers were William Milligan and Robert Malone.