CUFI would like to thank all our supporters who attended the Never Again Is Now prayer rally on Sunday evening in a peaceful stand of solidarity with the Jewish community, and for all those who prayed for the event at home. CUFI was pleased to support the event organised by Christian Action Against Antisemitism. Thousands of Christians stood shoulder to shoulder with members of the Jewish community in a powerful stand against antisemitism and called for the safe return of all Israeli hostages held captive by Hamas.   

In a truly historic occasion, Whitehall was turned into a sea of candlelights, with Israeli and British flags flying in the wind, chants of ‘Bring them home’ and moving songs of hope. Among the line-up of speakers representing Christians and Jews was CUFI’s Executive Director Des Starritt, who spoke about the importance of Christians standing in solidarity with the Jewish community. We were also moved to hear the heart-wrenching first-hand accounts of family members of the hostages, including Thomas Hand, father of Emily, who turned 9 in Hamas captivity this week. 

“She’s only 9 years old,” Thomas Hand told the crowd whilst fighting back tears, “Her place is at home with us. In her own room; in her own bed. Emily and all the hostages deserve to be back home in the loving arms of their families. Please, help me bring my sweet, little, innocent Emily home….We’re all living in a nightmare. I don’t think any of us in Israel will ever be the same again after that day. It’s going to take generations to truly fix us. Please help in any way you can.”


Tim Gutmann of Christian Action Against Antisemitism told the rally, “We mourn the past when there was a lot of antisemitism done under the banner of the cross…We mourn the past when, during the Holocaust, 70 per cent of Germany was Protestant Christian and the rest were mainly Catholic. So, many were silent and only a small percentage spoke out.

“Our message to you today is that we will not be silent today. As Christians, we say ‘not on our watch’. We stand with you, the Jewish community, shoulder to shoulder. We love you. We support you. And we always will…Never again is now.”

One of the participants names Sarah told CUFI, “It was such a blessing to be there, to stand literally shoulder-to-shoulder with Jewish people, and to hear first-hand the harrowing testimonies of parents whose children are still being held hostage in Hamas’ underworld. I closed my eyes as we sang songs, and it was like being in Israel, which I cannot wait to visit again. It was a privilege to hold up a poster for 12-year-old hostage, Eitan Yahalomi. This morning I learnt that he is a promising footballer, a serious Manchester United fan, and an aspiring astronaut. May God move sovereignly to bring him home, and to bring every single hostage home.”

Another named Richard said, “Having gone with a number of Jewish friends to stand with you, we were deeply moved by the love and support shown to us. I suspect that many who attended will not realise how much comfort their presence has brought to our community. I hope this message lets them know how grateful we feel. Recently my daughter said to me, “Dad, I didn’t realise how much we are hated.” Having been to today’s event, it shows that through these dark times there are beacons of light shining through.”

Among the speakers was Simon Barrett of Revelation TV. Simon said, “We’re seeing sadly on our streets the rise in Jew hatred that we haven’t seen since the 1930s, but the demonstration we’re seeing here today…is absolutely incredible. We serve the God of Israel, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. When it comes to Jew hatred, we will not be quiet, we will defend the beacon of light, which is the nation of Israel.”

Gary Mond, chairman of the National Jewish Assembly shared his appreciation from the platform, “On behalf of the Jewish community I cannot thank our Christian friends enough for staging the event tonight. There have been many in the Jewish community in the past few weeks who have feared that we’re on our own. What has happened tonight has proved that completely wrong.”

“It was an honour to speak at the event alongside other pro-Israel organisations and amongst a crowd who clearly loved Israel,” says Des Starritt, CUFI’s Executive Director. “I explained to those gathered that I often wondered what I would have done if I was alive during the Holocaust. Would I have followed the crowd? Would I have been intimidated into silence by the angry mobs on the streets and done nothing? Or would I have been one of those few Righteous Gentiles who stood up and spoke out? It is a challenge to all of us. In our lifetime, we have an opportunity to find out what we are made of. It is time for the Righteous Gentiles to arise. The time for Christians to stand up and be counted is now. As the title of the rally declared, ‘Never Again Is Now’.”

Watch the address by CUFI’s Des Starritt below.

Header photo credit: Chiko Ashkenazi