Today we remember the six million Jewish people, including the lives of 1.5 million children, who suffered and lost their lives during the Holocaust.
More than fifty years later, their suffering is still very real. The memories of the terrible cruelties that they underwent have never, and will never fade
This service has a very deep and abiding significance for the people of New York City.
New York is home to the largest Jewish population of any city, including the cities of Israel, and we also have the largest number of Holocaust survivors outside of the state of Israel.
Throughout the history of this city, New York has been inextricably linked to the Jewish people.
In 1654, the first group of 23 Jewish refugees landed in New Amsterdam.
And since that time, the Jewish people have shaped the culture, the values and the definition of New York... and have helped to make us the great city we have become.
This service is critical in keeping the memories alive of the six million Jewish people who suffered and died.
In remembering the suffering of those who have gone before us, we can learn from that tragedy and ensure that it will never happen again.
With the love and support of your families... your children... and your grandchildren... the survivors of Ghetto Lodz here with us today pass on to the next generation the invaluable lessons and experiences of their lives.
While the terrible atrocities of the Holocaust were intended to break their spirit and eliminate the Jewish people, their terrible plan failed.
It failed because nothing that is borne out of fear and terror can stand in the way of courage, strength, and faith.
Your presence here today is a powerful testament to the enduring faith of the Jewish people.