By Bob Reddy (Florida Catholic)
The 10th Annual Humanity Working to End Genocide Rally Against Genocide was held Feb. 26 at St. Martha Parish in Sarasota and featured a talk about genocide and one of the consequences of mass atrocities – todayâ€™s refugee crisis.
Sponsored by the Diocese of Venice and the Sarasota Jewish Federation, the event featured guest speaker Dr. Ellen J. Kennedy, founder and executive director of World Without Genocide.
The event is co-chaired by Bishop Frank J. Dewane, who gave the invocation; Rabbi Howard Simon, and Rev. Dr. Tom Pfaff, President of Sarasota Ministerial Association. Humanity Working to End Genocide is a coalition of different groups dedicated to ending genocide throughout the world. The group was created to raise community awareness and to end the hatred that fuels genocide.
Dr. Kennedy spoke about the long-term impacts of genocide. The humanitarian and refugee crisis almost always follows. Citing the current situation in Syria, where nearly 13.5 million need humanitarian assistance, another 4.8 million have fled the country as refugees, more than half are children.
The event concluded with religious leaders from across Sarasota symbolically standing up in support on the need for action. Bishop Dewane, who gave the invocation, said there is much to be done and gatherings like the one at St. Martha are important.
For more information about the ongoing efforts of Humanity Working to End Genocide please visit www.hwegsrq.org/.