06 April 2020
The official Opening Ceremony for Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day, which was pre-recorded without an audience in Warsaw Ghetto Square at Yad Vashem on the Mount of Remembrance in Jerusalem, will be broadcast on Monday, 20 April 2020 at 20:00 (Israel time). Yad Vashem will transmit the State Opening Ceremony complete with simultaneous translation (except for the remarks of the President and Prime Minister) into English, French, German, Russian and Spanish on Yad Vashem's website. The feed will also be broadcast via Yad Vashem's Facebook page.
The ceremony will comprise traditional elements, including pre-recorded video remarks by Israel’s President H.E. Mr. Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister H.E. Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu. Yad Vashem Council Chairman and Holocaust survivor Rabbi Israel Meir Lau will kindle the Memorial Torch. Naomi Cassuto will speak on behalf of the survivors.
During the ceremony, six torches will be lit, and the stories of six Holocaust survivors featured. Their names will be released prior to Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Israeli singers Shiri Maimon and Shai Tzabari will participate in the ceremony, which will also include narrative pieces written by Holocaust survivor Jack Werber, recited by Israeli actor Zohar Straus. The MC for the ceremony will be Danny Cushmaro.
The ceremony will feature a traditional memorial service, including the recitation of a chapter from Psalms by Chief Rabbi of Israel Rabbi David Lau. The Rishon LeZion, Chief Rabbi of Israel Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef will recite the Kaddish mourner's prayer, and Cantor Daniel Dahan will recite El Maleh Rahamim, the Jewish prayer for the souls of the martyrs.
To mark Holocaust Remembrance Day this year, when public gatherings have been banned in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak worldwide, Yad Vashem invites the public to participate in an international campaign to record themselves reciting the names of Holocaust victims, and share the video on social media using the hashtags #RememberingFromHome #ShoahNames
The campaign #RememberingFromHome #ShoahNames encourages people of all ages, from all walks of life, from all corners of the world, to join this global name-reading initiative and thereby help restore the identities of the millions of Holocaust victims – men, women and children.
On the Yad Vashem website, access will be provided to:
- A list of adult names and children's names
- A link to names of Holocaust victims by country
- A link to the Central Database of Shoah Victims’ Names, in order to allow a search for family names
All the participants in this campaign are kindly requested to video themselves (15 seconds maximum) reciting names, and then share their video in their social media with the hashtags: #RememberingFromHome #ShoahNames. Yad Vashem will then collect videos from all over the world and create an online Holocaust Remembrance Day Global Name-Reading Ceremony.
"Join us and mark Holocaust Remembrance Day this year from your homes," said Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev. "Help us to restore the memory of those murdered during the Holocaust, as you do each and every year. Although the circumstances this year are unique, the message is still the same: We will never forget their names."