Tor nach Zion e.V.

A mixed group of school aged teens up to retired people went in two fully occupied buses to Oswiecim.

Each participant had prepared himself prior to the journey about what he was going to experience and see. On Thursday and Friday we saw all the culture and prosperity of the Jewish people that has been destroyed during the Shoah. On Thursday we went to the only existing synagogue that has been left in Oswiecim as well as the Jewish museum with a café in the house of the Jewish family Kluger. Oswiecim was once a majoritarian Jewish city where naturally Poles and Jewish lived side by side and with each other. That is the reason why Jews would call this place Oszpicim (hospitality). Known as Auschwitz is this place an eyesore in German history. On Friday we toured the most beautiful city of Krakow, we visited the Jewish quarter with its synagogues  - but without any Jewish community. The old Jewish cemetery is for many Charedim (very religious Jews) a place of pilgrimage due to influential rabbis that have been buried here. Only in the afternoon we were able to visit the Schindler museum on the other side of the river Vistula because of a heavy rush. The depressing German occupation, the Polish resistance as well as the story of Oskar Schindler and the Schindler Jews were impressively presented in the museum.

Jack Bribram, our Polish tour guide met us on Saturday to show us the working and termination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau. At this place we were confronted with the unimaginable crimes of our forefathers as well as the creation of an unbearable hell on earth. In blind obedience to Hitler and Himmler, the commandant Rudolf Höß had created a perfidious system of self-organization of the extermination of mainly Jews – here mainly from Hungary – on an industrial scale. It was shocking how willingly German architects, engineers, a crematorium factory, a chemical factory and the German National Railway helped to make this madness a reality. Our group had the opportunity to visit ‘Fountain of Tears’. We were welcomed by Dorota Leszcynska, the Polish coordinator of the pavilion of Rick and Dafna Wienecke. She showed us the dialogue of the Jewish Messiah Yeshua on the cross with the Holocaust survivor. Afterwards and also on Sunday we had the possibility to come here with our questions, fears, doubts and the shock about this monstrous evil and crime and find peace in God. It was a good end to our journey and each one of us had a very private and quite time at ‘Fountain of Tears’. During the whole trip we had daily reserved times of prayer, conversations and the celebration of the holy supper.