Dec 2008 Journal

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AJR Report

70th anniversary of Kristallnacht
To commemorate the 70th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the AJR sponsored a special ceremony, organised by Liberal Judaism, at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue in St John’s Wood, London, on 9 November. The service included special readings and music sung by a combined choir of voices from Liberal Judaism synagogues.

Also to mark the anniversary of Kristallnacht, the Holocaust Centre (formerly Beth Shalom) organised, with AJR support, a commemorative concert at the Barbican Hall in London. The main part of the programme, performed by the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra to an audience of 1,200 guests, was Leonard Bernstein’s Kaddish Symphony.

Stumbling Stone
The AJR was proud to sponsor two screenings of the documentary film Stumbling Stone (Stolpersteine; firector Dörte Franke) as part of the Jewish Film Festival. The film is a combined portrait, road movie and story of the largest decentralised memorial in the world, the focus being on Gunter Demnig, who has set 12,000 names of forgotten victims of the Nazis in concrete on Europe’s pavements. The film follows the artist on his controversial project to lay small memorial stones outside the former residences of Holocaust victims.

Extension of Manx museum sought
During the early period of the Second World War, many AJR members were interned on the Isle of Man. Now, the AJR has lent its support to a campaign to develop the Manx Ancestry Centre in Douglas, the island’s capital.

The proposal will provide island residents and visitors with the digitalisation of their Manx family history sourced from, inter alia, newspapers, photographs, oral history recordings, and film collections.

Despite being held in detention on the island, the refugees from Nazi-occupied Central Europe were able to develop there a remarkable array of educational and cultural activities. In recent years, many of our members have greatly benefited from records kept by the Manx National Heritage Library.
 

Michael Newman

previous article:In memory of Kristallnacht (review)
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