Remembrance Service

with Mozarz Requiem in D minor

On International World AIDS Day, December 1, 2017, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn and Chairman of LIFE+ Gery Keszler hosted an interdenominational remembrance service in Vienna’s Saint Stephen’s Cathedral.

The magnificent cathedral, decorated with twelve of the Names Project Vienna’s Memorial Quilts, was filled to the last rows. In addition to the quilts, which were sewn family and friends as a last farewell to their loved ones, a sea of forget-me-not flowers in the sanctuary reminded of the 35 million people worldwide who have died of HIV / AIDS.

Cathedral Priest Toni Faber, Father Clemens Kriz, Maria Happel, and many companions shaped the evening together with Cardinal Christoph Schönborn. Verena Doppler, Markus Freistätter, Missy May, Rose Alaba, Nathan Trent, and Conchita spoke on behalf of those gathered in the Cathedral in hopeful intercessory prayers.

Under the direction of the internationally renowned conductor Keri-Lynn Wilson, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra and the Vienna Philharmonia Choir let Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Requiem in D minor resound. New discoveries by Plácido Domingo brought their unique voices to the cause in solo passages: soprano Julia Novikova, mezzo-soprano Elena Maximova, tenor Levy Strauss Sekgapane (Operalia winner 2017) and bass Andrea Mastroni.

The soul and jazz singer Dorretta Carter dismissed the friends, relatives, and supporters who had come together to commemorate in Austria’s most important church on a hopeful note.

‘If God does not come to judge us but rather to save us, for us this means: do not judge, do not exclude, do not speak ill.’ This, dear friends, only this can change our country. Maybe it will happen from this evening onward,’said Cardinal Christoph Schönborn in his sermon.

Cardinal Christoph Schönborn and Gery Keszler during the remembrance service in St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

And so today, tonight, should not only serve us as a reminder but as proof. Proof that hardened fronts can melt and that we humans can approach each other. That across every denomination, every (political and social) point of view, and every gender orientation, bridges can be built to one another; some slow, some fast. What matters in our lives? Not one’s origin, not one’s skin color, not whom one loves, or what one believes in when praying. Only the human being counts – and the love that we can muster for each other,’ said Gery Keszler, the LIFE + Chairman about the evening.

Torchlight procession remembering those lost

A long-cherished tradition was revived by the chairwoman of PULSHIV, Wiltrut Stefanek. On the occasion of the World AIDS Day, a torchlight procession walked through the city of Vienna in memory of those who lost the fight against HIV / AIDS. To conclude the torchlight procession, Stefanek symbolically handed the fire over to Cardinal Christoph Schönborn.

We thank all our partners for their generous support of the remembrance service.






New infections 2015 worldwide


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