Monday, January 31, 2011


From email sent November 5, 2010:

On Tuesday/Wednesday of this week, Sister Marshall and I went to Krakow to visit, one of the things we did was to tour the Jewish Quarter during the war, mostly it looks like every other city in Poland, very old and dirty, slowly the cities are being refurbished, painted and cleaned up. All of the synagogues except the one we are standing in front of is the only functioning one left in Krakow. At one time there were five and most are now being used for other purposes., like museums or just left in ruin, Oddly enough Krakow wasn't bombed during the war, so the old castle and churches are still standing. wish we would have had time to visit the palace as well, but we choose instead to visit Auschwitz and Bierkenau. That will be a memory forever engraved in my mind. to see the reality of the brutality of the war. When we went to Birkenau it was nearly dark, so by the time we went inside one of the buildings it was very dark and there are no lights, I did have a small flash light so used that, However when those women and children were imprisoned there, there were no lights, and all had to be done in the dark, hungry, tired, cold any other debilitating adjective one could imagine, and there I stood, cold but with a warm coat, scarf, and SHOES. and there because of my choice, and not HUNGRY, and could go buy whatever kind of food I choose. I think seeing it in the dark with a tiny flash light left much more of an impression than seeing it the daylight. to maybe feel to a very small degree as those women did. How is it that I am so blessed?? There is a brick chimney(heater) in each room, however they had nothing to burn and if they used the beds slats they would have been shot, literally, There were 3 levels and each level about 6 feet across and to each level. about 5 people were assigned.
As I walked through Auschwitz and went up and down the stone stairs, there are indentations where thousands of people walked and hand rails they touched and I felt to a small degree the sadness, the terror, the finality of life in that camp. The displays of hair, shoes, (men, women, children and babies) the personal items, shaving brushes, shoe polish, leather suitcases, glasses, anything a person could use to sustain life to even the least degree of comfort was taken from them, artificial limbs, canes. braces, the list is forever long, all were taken and these people slaughtered as animals. as that is how the German political leaders looked on these Jewish people. So completely sad to see a pile of little boots.

Many of the children were adopted by the other citizens of the cities, and raised as their own, so their heritage was lost, but their lives were saved. I think I shall never complain about my black shoes not matching my brown skirt ever again, I have sufficient for my needs. and more.

So of course I have a question, how does the atonement cover those people who committed and allowed to be committed against those people.? Is there enough time in all eternity to even come close to repenting for all those acts of atrocity?? and if they willingly did these things, how can this be?? I remember the story told of Corrie ten Boom in conference about meeting one of the guards from the camp where she and her sister were imprisoned and her sister died. he had asked her forgivness for all he had done. and how she felt, so in this life time must he seek personal forgiveness from each person?? and what of those that died, must he ask for personal forgiveness from each of those people. so many questions and I do have a tiny tiny tiny understanding of the atonement, but not much. and so many questions,

No comments:

Post a Comment