Friday, 13 May 2016 13:33

Τhe March of the Living, a march in memoriam of the victims of the Holocaust, took place on May 5th, 2016, in Auschwitz, Poland. The march follows a route of 3 km from Auschwitz to Birkenau concentration camp.

Following the initiative of  chief rabbi Israel Meir Lau, the Greek flag was put at head of this year’s march, along with a banner reading “Anti-Semitism equals antichristianism”, a slogan inspired by the Bishop of Dimitrias and Almyros, Mr. Ignatios. The Greek flag, in this honourable position in front of all the world flags and official guests, was carried by the General Secretary of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece and President of the Jewish Community of Volos, Mr. Marcel Solomon.

People were marching alongside the rails of the trains that used to unload families so that it would be decided who was to put to death in gas chambers  and who was going to “live” in the concentration camp. In front of the Greek flag, the parade was led by a survival of the Holocaust, Mr. Edward Mosberg, who was born in Krakow on 1926 and has the number 85454 on his arm.

In his speech, chief rabbi Lau underlined that anti-Semitism is hatred against humanity. “Anti-Semitism did not die in Auschwitz. It just changed its words, its slogans, so we must be careful in order to avoid repetition of the crimes of the past”, he said.

During a ceremony that was dedicated to those who with selfsacrifice rescued Jews during the war, Bishop Ignatios lit the first torch. Then, the master of the ceremony stated: “In the footsteps of Archbishop of Zakynthos Chrysostomos and the Bishop of Dimitrias Joachim, who put their lives in danger, in order to save others, Bishop Ignatios is today a unique voice of love. He does not distinguish anyone by their color, their origin or their creed.” 


Just before lighting a torch, with each torch standing for a million of souls, Βishop Ignatios claimed: “I find myself here as a pilgrim to the place where millions of Jews were put to death, as a student of the meek and humble Jesus Christ. I wish that the light of this torch will remind us all of the message of love, as well as of the message that His Gospel brings to the world. I hope and pray that the light of this torch will enlighten everyone’s mind and soul, with a view to create a world of justice, coexistence and peace. Let there be never again a Holocaust.”

A video was aired during the ceremony, showing a flight of the Israeli Air Force over the concentration camp back in 2003. At the same time a message was read by a survival of the Holocaust, saying: “To the Commander of Auschwitz concentration camp: I would like you to know that today, among the people who are honoring the memory of the victims, stands my granddaughter. The best answer to the atrocities is the very continuity of life.

Last but not least, one of the pilots that flew over Auschwitz that day stated that it was the most sensational day of his life, as he could see the whole history of 60 years in just a 30" flight. “We were born through the ashes of millions of dead”, he concluded.

Website of the March of the living 2016 livestream [1:09:34: The flight of the Israeli Air Force over the concentration camp back in 2003, 2:41:46: Bishop Ignatios lights the first torch]