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UNA Religion Professor Gives Invocation at Holocaust Memorial Service
Apr. 8, 2013



By Elise Cofield, Student Writer

FLORENCE, Ala. – The Alabama Holocaust Commission has invited the University of North Alabama’s own Dr. Carl Gebhardt, adjunct instructor of religion, to return for the third time to offer the invocation at the "Annual Gathering of Remembrance" on Tuesday, April 9, in the Old House Chamber at the State Capitol in Montgomery.

The Annual Day of Remembrance is a gathering hosted by the Alabama Holocaust Commission every April and a time set aside by members of Jewish community to remember the Holocaust in Nazi Germany and across Europe. The televised event is open to the public.

“The dreadful history of the Holocaust is a history that we all share,” Gebhardt said, “and one for which we bear some responsibility for making sure that such devastating mass murder never takes place again – or at least that the perpetrators do not go unpunished again.”

The program begins at 11 a.m. and will include a proclamation by Gov. Robert Bentley and a keynote address by Rabbi Jonathan Miller of Temple Emanu-El in Birmingham.

Gebhardt said he was first invited to give the invocation when his name was suggested by Dr. Robert Adler, a recently retired UNA professor who is a member of the Alabama Holocaust Commission.

Gebhardt said his prayer will remember “those who were lost whose names we know, and also those whose names we don’t know,” as well as honor a group referred to as the “Righteous of the Nations,” the mostly Christian people of Europe who, at great risk to themselves and their families, protected Jews during the Holocaust.

“We may actually have one or two survivors of the concentration camps that may actually be there at this ceremony,” he said. “A lot of people there are children and grandchildren of survivors.”

For more information, contact the UNA Department of History and Political Science at 256-765-4306.