Christian students tell reactions to Survivor’s talk

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Rose Schindler shows students the numbers Nazis tattooed on her arm

TECATE,  California — Holocaust concentration camp survivor Rose Schindler traveled from her home in San Diego to Tecate, a town that sits on the U.S-Mexico border in the eastern portion of San Diego County, on Thursday, March 8 to share her experiences with students at the Tecate Christian School. “She was amazing and touched many hearts, both kids and adults,” said John Jenstad, a teacher who helped arrange her visit.

Following are some student essays on what they heard:

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By Annett Mandujano  

Where do you start when all you have left are pungent memories? You lift up your head, dress up in hope and walk with strength forward from the beginning. Mrs. Schindler didn’t let herself crumble to the ground; she and her husband rebuilt their lives and family values in their own family. A punitive man thought the end of a race was achieved by shedding blood, but he fired a strong desire to survive. He tattooed skin. Jews tattooed history.

I used to think Hitler massacred Jews’ hopes during the Holocaust; Mrs. Schindler taught me it was hope that kept them alive. “Where was God?” many ask. God was there, but where was man? Just like Habakkuk 2:4 says, Mrs. Schindler watered again the plant of her faith and planted its seeds in her children’s heart which also germinated and now bear fruit.

Sometimes we use a microscope to see our problems and they look like horrible monsters to our eyes, but Mrs. Schindler taught me that when things get really bad they can only get better. Don’t lose hope. As a young adult heading to college, I do feel scared sometimes about my future. Mrs. Schindler taught me something I will never forget: be nice to people and they’ll be nice to you. We don’t have to like everyone around us or have to believe the same things to be friends; we must tolerate and respect each other as human beings, creations of the same Almighty God. Thank you Mrs. Schindler, for blessing my life with yours; may God bless you and your family every day.

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Rose Schindler and students of Tecate Christian School

By Gabriela Escalera

The Holocaust was the genocide of six million Jews during World War II. It began in  1938 and was led by the Nazi leader, Adolf Hitler. Jews were taken in trains to extermination camps, where if they survived, they were taken to the gas chambers. These gas chambers had a pungent smell that killed people horribly. Many people and children were used for doing medical experiments.

Holocaust comes from the Greek, meaning animal sacrifice. Many Jews prefer to call the Holocaust Shoah, meaning calamity, for many reasons including the offensive meaning of Holocaust.

The Holocaust is one of the most horrible periods in world history. It opened my eyes to see that this is something to always think about and that not all people are good. The Holocaust is a stage in people’s lives that always reminds them of pain and suffering. This makes me think of the way that we treat others. Rose Schindler has been a person who has impacted my life. The look in her eyes, the tone of her voice, and every single thing about her talked about the suffering in the Holocaust. She lived because of hope, and that took her very far in life. Now she has been recompensed by having a wonderful family, filled with joy and love.

With the memories of the Holocaust, people can become traumatized. This could make them become depressed, and always be afraid of people. Cruelty is the worst thing that anyone could do to people. It is not only about talking badly to anyone; it is also the puritanical way we treat them. We should always respect and treat everyone else just as if they were our family. The color of skin or where they come from is not an excuse to treat someone badly. We should all love and care for every single one, because love is one of the most beautiful things in life, and we should all have the right to enjoy it.

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By Marilu Aguilar

Waking up to the smell of fresh bread coming from my mom’s baking, looking at my small sister sleeping by my side in our nice house inCzechoslovakia, hearing laughing in the room next door, and being warm in a cozy bed seemed like a far away dream now. I opened my eyes to the pungent smell coming from the ovens, the empty feeling in my stomach, the pain in my back, and the bruises on my body that had not let me sleep. I heard yells coming from the people being chosen out of the lines to be taken away; they knew their end had come. I kept repeating to myself the words my father had told me the last time I saw him, “Stay Together and try to stay alive so you can tell the world what they are doing to us.”

Six million deaths, 1.5 million children murdered, families separated, people hurt, and faded smiles: all took place in World War II. Rose Schindler was one of the admirable survivors; God chose her to have perseverance to stay alive; she did, and this is one of the things that make her the beautiful person she is today. Her heroic story of what she and her sisters went through bring a smile to her face, while at the same time tears to millions of eyes. The Holocaust survivors will never forget what happened to them, and I will never forget Rose Schindler’s story either; Rose Schindler was able to fulfill what her father told her to do; she “stayed alive and told the world what they did to them.”

Being able to listen to a speaker from the Holocaust impacted me a lot, for my great grandparents were survivors of the Spanish War, and they went through the same: concentration camps, corrupt leaders, families’ lost, and much suffering. I admire the courage survivors have to stand up in front of crowds to tell their story. The memories of all those people who killed their families bring pain to their hearts; they know how evil all of those soldiers were, but they still forgive them, just like God forgives us. I think every survivor now has faith and understands that God had a better plan for their lives, inAmerica, and He knew they were going to be very happy one day; the Holocaust is now the memory of a nightmare they once had.

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Preceding provided by Tecate Christian School

 

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