There's an interesting new Holocaust-related blog in the world called "A Page in History," and it comes from the Claims Conference, the agency that has been working since the early 1950s to find compensation for Jewish families that were victims of the Holocaust.
As the agency's Web site explains, because of negotiations led by the Claims Conference since 1952, "the German government has paid more than $60 billion in indemnification for suffering and losses resulting from Nazi persecution. Claims Conference negotiations have also resulted in the creation of funds from German and Austrian industry, as well as the Austrian government."
I first learned of the Claims Conference when I was working on my new book, They Were Just People: Stories of Rescue in Poland During the Holocaust, which I co-authored with Rabbi Jacques Cukierkorn. I had simply always assumed that somehow Germany and perhaps others were being held financially responsible in some way for the Nazi government's nearly successful effort to destroy European Jewry, but I was unaware of how that was taking place.
At any rate, the new blog from the Claims Conference is offering both updates on work the agency is doing but also interesting historical stories about survivors.
Each day people are born who have no idea about the Holocaust and what it says about the human condition. It's such efforts as the new Claims Conference blog that will help to teach them what they will need to know if they are to have any chance to avoid being part of anything similar in the future -- either as perpetrators or victims.
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SUPPORT FOR THAT NYC MOSQUE
Good for New York Mayor Bloomberg for backing Muslims who want to create a mosque in lower Manhattan, not far from Ground Zero. Unless this is a group of followers of Osama bin Laden -- whom most Muslims could declare has given up the right to be called Muslim -- what possible reason is there to oppose this? Well, other than anti-Islamic prejudice, which is no good reason at all.
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P.S.: At 9 a.m. this Sunday, June 6, at Westport Presbyterian Church, the Rev. Scott Myers will offer "An lluminated Lecture" on the art of loving God. The free lecture will include music, poetry and art displayed on a large screen. Myers developed this illuminated lecture for the Faith Foundations Series at South Dakota State University last fall.