A global interfaith initiative to commemorate Kristallnacht next month is being organised by March of the Living, which arranges for people to walk the length of the railroad tracks from Auschwitz to Birkenau.
Those behind the idea have invited adherents of all religions to illuminate their homes, offices, institutions and places of worship as the world remembers the terrible events in Germany and Austria on 9 November 1938.
The two-day Nazi pogrom led to more than 1,400 synagogues and Jewish properties burned or smashed up, leading to the name ‘Kristallnacht’ – night of broken glass.
Organised under the #LetThereBeLight hashtag, this year’s virtual campaign to include faiths from around the world invites people to keep their lights on during the night of 9 November, as a symbol of solidarity in the battle against antisemitism.
“We must use our voices to tell the world that attacks on Jews and non-Jews alike, whether on the basis of religion, race, colour or creed, are inexcusable,” said March of the Living.
“In the days when synagogues and holy places for various religions are attacked on a regular basis all over the world, it is our duty to speak out loudly and clearly.”
Organisers said prayers and personal messages of hope submitted through the virtual campaign will be projected on the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem.
John Farmer of the Eagleton Institute of Politics said Kristallnacht “marked a fundamental turning point in the historical movement from culturally-based antisemitism to state-sanctioned genocide”.
He said: “On 9 November 1938, the antisemitic propaganda to which the Jewish population had been subjected for years was transformed to open violence. Commemorating that dark day in human history is particularly significant today, as the hatred that has been rising over social media has begun erupting into violence.”
Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.
Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.
For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.
Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.
You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.
100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...
Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.
There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.
In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.
Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish News also produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.
In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.
Voice of our community to wider society
The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.
We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.