Huntsville religious leaders reflect on International Holocaust Remembrance Day


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – January 27th, is International Holocaust Remembrance Day. This year marks the 76th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp, and more so, continuing the legacy of remembering the millions of people who lost their lives during World War II.

More than 6 million Jews were tortured and killed by Nazis during World War II. Over one million innocent people were sent to Auschwitz.

“What is it to be alive if we have no ability to remember and to remember those events that didn’t affect us personally but affect us as a people,” Rabbi Eric Berk said.

Berk is a rabbi at Temple B’nai Sholom in Huntsville. He said this day is about overcoming hate.

“It’s an impactful reminder, especially, I think today here in Huntsville,” Berk said.

In April 2020, someone vandalized two synagogues in town, Chabad of Huntsville and Etz Chayim synagogue. Leaders have since upped security, but the suspect is still on the loose.

The FBI is offering a $15,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest of the suspect.

“Our level of awareness has significantly changed,” Etz Chayim Lay Leader Bill Goldberg said.

“People need to recognize that a lot of this hate stuff, there’s no basis to any of the hate,” Goldberg said. “Somehow or another we have to find a way to educate people and make them aware of what the problem is.”

Berk and Goldberg agree it is crucial to commemorate this day and remember:

“Hate doesn’t seem to die, but we have to remember love can overcome hate,” Berk said.