Candlelight vigil

October 15, 2015 by J-Wire Staff
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Vic Alhadeff, the chief executive of The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies, spoke at a candlelight vigil help to pay last respects to Curtis Cheng, the police employee gunned down in Sydney last week.

Federal member for Parramatta Julie Owens, Vic Alhadeff and mp and State member Parramatta Julia Finn

Federal member for Parramatta Julie Owens, Vic Alhadeff and mp
and State member Parramatta Julia Finn

Alhadeff was one of eight speakers at the vigil held at Parramatta Police Station, the site of the killing, and organised by the Multicultural Communities council of NSW.

The vigil was attended by leaders of ethnic groups and State and Federal politicians.

Alhadeff told the hushed crowd: “Alpha, Zilvia and Salina Cheng have tragically found themselves thrust onto a page of our country’s history.
The darkest of pages.

One which speaks of unfathomable cruelty. Of unconscionable barbarity. Of senseless hatred and bigotry.

We grieve with them at their incomprehensible loss.

And we stand with all Australians of goodwill who seek nothing more – and nothing less – than a society in which respect is the norm.

Respect for diversity.  Respect for the other. Respect for the liberal democratic values which make our country great, but which are imperilled by the likes of the terrible event which has brought us here tonight.

The former Chief Rabbi of the Commonwealth, Lord Jonathan Sacks, said: “Terror fails and will always fail because it arouses in us a profound instinct for life.

“Terror makes us vigilant in defence of what we otherwise take for granted: the sanctity of life, the importance of freedom, the rich diversity of our nation.”

There is a Hebrew phrase, “Am echad b’lev echad;” it translates as – One people with one heart.

Tonight the heart of the Australian people is heavy, yet we are united in our resolve for peace and understanding; and our quest for unity; and the need to quash the extremist elements amongst us is unwavering.

The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies stands with the Cheng family, with the NSW Police and with our fellow Australians in saying no to hatred and in pursuit of a better tomorrow.

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