Holocaust Survivor Rabbi Romi Cohen Delivers Opening Prayer in Congress Rabbi Avraham Hakohen “Romi” Cohn, prominent NYC leader and Holocaust survivor, delivers opening prayer before House of Representatives
Wednesday, January 29, 2020
WASHINGTON – Congressman Max Rose, Member of the Bipartisan Task Force for Combating Antisemitism, hosted Staten Island resident and longtime New York City Rabbi Avraham Hakohen “Romi” Cohn, a Holocaust survivor, to deliver the Opening Prayer before the House of Representatives today.
“I’m especially honored to welcome Rabbi Cohn this week as we remember the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz. Rabbi Cohn’s career is merely the continuation of a life spent fighting for the Jewish faith,” said Rose in a speech on the House floor, “Rabbi Cohn saw how a democracy can be corrupted into a fascist dictatorship, and what happens when anti-Semitism is allowed to fester. Sadly, across the country we see rising hatred and anti-Semitism. Rabbi Cohn’s legacy reminds us to never accept bigotry, not when we see it in the street, and not in the halls of Congress.”
“At the age of 13, as a young boy, I was condemned to death along with my entire family by the evil of one man,” said Rabbi Cohn in his Opening Prayer. “I was saved by my Father, the Father of the Universe, who brought me to the shores of this beautiful country, the United States, the land of the free which provided me with a new safe home. Blessed be You, Master of the Universe, who has granted me life and sustenance to this day. Accept with mercy our prayers for our land, our President, Vice President and Congress. And pour out your blessings upon the United States of America.”
"It was poignant to have Reb Romi delivered the opening prayer on the very same week that the world commemorated the 75 years of the liberation of Auschwitz with
'The Lord, the Father of the universe who brought me to the shores of this beautiful country, the United States of America, the land of the free, where I found a safe and new home.
As I stand before you, on the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of the Auschwitz death camp, praise and gratitude to the almighty, blessed are you, King of the universe, who has granted life to thousands to this day.' -sentiments that leave a lasting impression and Kiddush Hashem", said Ezra Friedlander, CEO of The Friedlander Group who helped the coordinate of the delegation of prominent rabbinic and community leaders who travelled to Washington to witness Rabb Cohen's prayer from the House Gallery.
Rose, the first Jewish Member of Congress from Staten Island, gave a speech before the House of Representatives earlier this month on the rising levels of anti-Semitic attacks and hate crimes across New York City, as well as his continued efforts to address this crisis. Last summer, Rose traveled to Israel as part of a bipartisan Congressional delegation which visited prominent holy sites and the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial and Museum.