Photo: Jacqueline Bouts

Each year, on the second Sunday of December, candles are lit around the world to remember the children who died. Here in Leiden, Xenia Hospice organises an annual ceremony to remember the children. Relatives and friends are invited to light a candle and the names of the children are read aloud.

This year’s ceremony was broadcast from the Academy of the University of Leiden. Relatives and friends sent pre-recorded messages and photographs of the children for whom the candles were lit. It was very moving indeed to hear the personal messages and see the photographs.

Emma sang ‘Memory’ from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘Cats’ and ‘Silent Night.’ The duo Windstreken played beautiful, reflective music, and the city poet, Marianne van Velzen, read a poem she wrote especially for the event.