“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;
I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”
John 10:10 NAS
Dear family of friends,
In an earlier Ahava Love Letter I wrote about Little Orphan Chuckie, the abandoned baby squirrel I found laying on the church park ground. At first glance he seemed lifeless. But when I stooped down to look further, I could tell he was breathing, and so I picked him up. A day later I was able to locate assistance for him for needed care. You can read the full story in the letter entitled, “Little Oprhan Chuckie – All Creatures Great and Small – The Lord Loves Them All.” It was a touching story I must admit.
In many situations I try to seek the Lord, to hear what He is saying. He is speaking quite often, and it is my desire to better listen. I want to know His voice clearer, and so I asked Him, “What more do you want to tell me about the baby squirrel situation?”
Following is that which I think He wanted to convey. It begins with a man named Oskar.
In 1993 a movie named Schindler’s List came out on the big screen in simple black and white. That in itself was telling as to how the movie would be played out. Directed by Steven Spielberg, it was a compelling story about Oskar Schindler, the man credited for saving over 1200 Jews from the gas ovens during the Holocaust in World War II. As do most historical films about the Jewish people, and Israel, it helped deepen my convictions in regards to support of the Jews, and others like them who have been extremely mistreated. Another stone had been placed in the strong foundation being built in my life, for His purposes He has planned ahead.
As I watched the film in the Ft. Lauderdale, FL with my good wife Laurie, I was gripped by the compassion Oskar had, as acted out by Liam Nesson. Because of his convictions, he worked to save many of the Jews his private industrial company had employed, from the murdering Nazi death trains and camps. What a testimony of what one man can do if he hears the call and obeys. (I never knew Schindler was a Catholic until very recently, which impressed me when I read more of his biography. Being raised a Catholic myself, it was good to read that. I have included part of his life’s bio below.)
I believe the day is coming when many Oskars will be needed again; those who will be called upon by the Lord to step out in courage and faith, to stand up and be counted in His camp of faith, mercy and love. The night is getting darker, and we will be needed to protect and help defend those among us whom the deceived will seek to steal, kill and destroy.
There is coming a powerful move of the Holy Spirit (Ruach HaKodesh) upon the true Church and modern day Righteous Ones, as the Jewish memorial museum Yad Vashem calls them. I believe I will be one, and so said to the Lord many years ago, “Here I am. Use me.”
I am preparing myself for that end. I hope you do too.
Ahava (love in Hebrew) to my family of friends,
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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Oskar Schindler (28 April 1908 – 9 October 1974) was an ethnic German industrialist, German spy, and member of the Nazi party who is credited with saving the lives of 1,200 Jews during the Holocaust by employing them in his enamelware and ammunitions factories, which were located in what is now Poland and the Czech Republic respectively. He is the subject of the 1982 novel Schindler's Ark, and the subsequent 1993 film Schindler's List, which reflected his life as an opportunist initially motivated by profit who came to show extraordinary initiative, tenacity, and dedication in order to save the lives of his Jewish employees.
Schindler grew up in Zwittau, Moravia, and worked in several trades until he joined the Abwehr, the intelligence service of Nazi Germany, in 1936. He joined the Nazi Party in 1939. Prior to the German occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1938, he collected information on railways and troop movements for the German government. He was arrested for espionage by the Czech government but was released under the terms of the Munich Agreement in 1938. Schindler continued to collect information for the Nazis, working in Poland in 1939 prior to the invasion of that country at the start of World War II.
In 1939 Schindler obtained an enamelware factory in Kraków, Poland, which employed around 1,750 workers, of whom a thousand were Jews at the factory's peak in 1944. His Abwehr connections helped Schindler protect his Jewish workers from deportation and death in the Nazi concentration camps. Initially Schindler was interested in the money-making potential of the business. Later he began shielding his workers without regard for the cost. As time went on, Schindler had to give Nazi officials ever larger bribes and gifts of luxury items obtainable only on the black market to keep his workers safe.
As Germany began to lose the war in July 1944, the Schutzstaffel (SS) began closing down the easternmost concentration camps and evacuating the remaining prisoners westward. Many were killed in Auschwitz and Gross-Rosen concentration camp. Schindler convinced SS-Hauptsturmführer Amon Göth, commandant of the nearby Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp, to allow him to move his factory to Brünnlitz in the Sudetenland, thus sparing his workers from certain death in the gas chambers. Using names provided by Jewish Ghetto Police officer Marcel Goldberg, Göth's secretary Mietek Pemper compiled and typed the list of 1,200 Jews who travelled to Brünnlitz in October 1944. Schindler continued to bribe SS officials to prevent the slaughter of his workers until the end of World War II in Europe in May 1945, by which time he had spent his entire fortune on bribes and black-market purchases of supplies for his workers.
Schindler moved to Germany after the war, where he was supported by assistance payments from Jewish relief organizations. After receiving a partial reimbursement for his wartime expenses, he moved with his wife to Argentina, where they took up farming. When he went bankrupt in 1958, Schindler left his wife and returned to Germany, where he failed at several business ventures and relied for financial support on his Schindlerjuden ("Schindler Jews") – the people whose lives he had saved during the war. He was named Righteous Among the Nations by the Israeli government in 1963 and died on 9 October 1974.
Films and book
Steven Spielberg (1999)
In 1951, Poldek Pfefferberg approached director Fritz Lang and asked him to consider making a film about Schindler. Also on Pfefferberg's initiative, in 1964 Schindler received a $20,000 advance from MGM for a proposed film treatment titled To the Last Hour. Neither film was ever made, and Schindler quickly spent the money he received from MGM. He was also approached in the 1960s by MCA of Germany and Walt Disney Productions in Vienna, but again nothing came of these projects.
In 1980, Australian author Thomas Keneally by chance visited Pfefferberg's luggage store in Beverly Hills while en route home from a film festival in Europe. Pfefferberg took the opportunity to tell Keneally the story of Oskar Schindler. He gave him copies of some materials he had on file, and Keneally soon decided to make a fictionalized treatment of the story. After extensive research and interviews with surviving Schindlerjuden, his 1982 historical novel Schindler's Ark (published in the United States as Schindler's List) was the result.
The novel was adapted into the 1993 movie Schindler's List by Steven Spielberg. After acquiring the rights in 1983, Spielberg felt he was not ready emotionally or professionally to tackle the project, and he offered the rights to several other directors. After he read a script for the project prepared by Steven Zaillian for Martin Scorsese, he decided to trade him Cape Fear for the opportunity to do the Schindler biography. In the film, the character of Itzhak Stern (played by Ben Kingsley) is a composite of Stern, Bankier, and Pemper. Liam Neeson was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Schindler in the film, which won seven Oscars, including Best Picture.
Other film treatments include a 1983 British television documentary produced by Jon Blair for Thames Television entitled Schindler: His Story as Told by the Actual People He Saved (released in the US in 1994 as Schindler: The Real Story),and a 1998 A&E Biography special, Oskar Schindler: The Man Behind the List.
In 1997 a suitcase belonging to Schindler containing historic photographs and documents was discovered in the attic of the apartment of Ami and Heinrich Staehr in Hildesheim. Schindler had stayed with the couple for a few days shortly before his death. Staehr's son Chris took the suitcase to Stuttgart, where the documents were examined in detail in 1999 by Dr. Wolfgang Borgmann, science editor of the Stuttgarter Zeitung. Borgmann wrote a series of seven articles, which appeared in the paper from 16 to 26 October 1999 and were eventually published in book form as Schindlers Koffer: Berichte aus dem Leben eines Lebensretters ; eine Dokumentation der Stuttgarter Zeitung (Schindler's Suitcase: Report on the Life of a Rescuer). The documents and suitcase were sent to the Holocaust museum at Yad Vashem in Israel for safekeeping in December 1999.
Copies of the list
Schindler's desk at Emalia sits near a tinware sarcophagus with a copy of his famous list inside.
In early April 2009, a carbon copy of one version of the list was discovered at the State Library of New South Wales by workers combing through boxes of materials collected by author Thomas Keneally. The 13-page document, yellow and fragile, was filed among research notes and original newspaper clippings. The document was given to Keneally in 1980 by Pfefferberg when he was persuading him to write Schindler's story. This version of the list contains 801 names and is dated 18 April 1945; Pfefferberg is listed as worker number 173. Several authentic versions of the list exist, as the names were re-typed several times as conditions changed in the hectic days at the end of the war.
One of four existing copies of the list was offered at a ten-day auction starting on 19 July 2013 on EBay at a reserve price of $3 million. It received no bids.
In August 2013, a one-page letter signed by Schindler on 22 August 1944 sold in an online auction for $59,135. The letter noted Schindler's permission for a factory supervisor to move machinery to Czechoslovakia. The same unknown auction buyer had previously purchased 1943 construction documents for Schindler's Krakow factory for $63,426.
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Ahava Love Letter #71 “Oskars Needed Again?” ©2013 Steve Martin
Date: In the year of our Lord 2013 (08/23/13 Friday at 7:45 am in Charlotte, NC)
All previous editions of Ahava Love Letter can be found on this Blog:
Here are the last few:
Little Orphan Chuckie (#70)
Demons & Fire Trucks (#69)
I Like Mike (#68)
Disappointed with Small Beginnings? (#67)
Rise Again (#66)
The Cities (#65)
How can You Mend A Broken Heart (#64)
Get Back in the Boat (#61)
Need Money? (#60)