Mid Sussex: Bishop observes National Holocaust Day

C121619-4 Chi Martin Warner  phot kate ''The new bishop of Chichester the Rt Revd Martin Warner.C121619-4 ENGSUS00120121126131229
C121619-4 Chi Martin Warner phot kate ''The new bishop of Chichester the Rt Revd Martin Warner.C121619-4 ENGSUS00120121126131229

The Bishop of Chichester Dr Martin Warner has spoken to the Diocese on National Holocaust Day (January 27).

He said: “The observance of National Holocaust Day will draw into focus both past and present.

“Looking back, we observe that it is 70 years since the liberation of the concentration camps in Germany and Poland. That is a life time. It is a reminder of our obligation to hand on to younger generations the urgent need to break the cycle of hatred that makes possible the crime of genocide.

“But we shall also mark this sombre day in the shadow of recent atrocities in France and the wider threat of terrorism across Europe and equally devastatingly, in Nigeria and other parts of Africa.

“At the heart of our Remembrance observations in November is the keeping of two minutes silence. As we face the scars that we have inflicted on each other within our global society, we would do well to seek in silence the capacity for repentance and the determination for change.

“Above all, it is a matter of urgency that we recover a sense of the sacred nature of the dignity of the human person. Reverence for another must include respect for the faith that person lives by.

“The scope of our silence and reflection is perhaps summed up in the words of Canon Max Warren, an English priest and evangelist, referencing the story of Moses who encounters strangely the presence of God in the burning bush: ‘Our first task in approaching another people, another culture, another religion, is to take off our shoes, for the place we are approaching is holy. Else we may find ourselves treading on another’s dreams. More serious still, we may forget that God was here before our arrival’.”