“Today we commemorate the victims of the Holocaust and all those persecuted and deported by the Nazi regime,” Pope Francis said at his weekly General Audience. His remarks came on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which occurs each year on the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau – the largest Nazi concentration and death camp – by the Soviet Red Army during the Second World War.
“Remembering is an expression of humanity. Remembering is a sign of civilization,” the Pope said. “Remembering is a condition for a better future of peace and fraternity.”
Pope Francis continued, saying, “Remembering also means being careful because these things could happen again, beginning with ideological proposals intended to save a people and ending by destroying a people and humanity.” He warned that we must be attentive “to how this path of death, of extermination, and brutality begin.”
The Pope’s words echoed his message at last year’s observance of the Day of Remembrance, when he called on everyone to mark the day by taking a moment of prayer and recollection, “saying in our hearts, ‘Never again!’” Pope Francis appealed for remembrance of the Holocaust, saying, “In the face of this immense tragedy, indifference is not admissible and memory is due.”