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The real fault is to have faults and not try to mend them. Confucius

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum is home to a very significant commemorative dedication. It serves in memory of the 6,000,000 people who were put to death in gas chambers or died in concentration camps during Hitler’s Nazi regime (1933-1945).

The Nazis came to power in 1933. Germany and its people had no idea what result the decimating outcome of the regime would bring. They endorsed policies without thinking.

When WWII broke out, times were extremely difficult. Germany collapsed in 1945 after it lost the war. With destruction great and malnutrition vast, a slow rebuilding process ensued.

During WWII, my grandfather fought in the German army against the Soviets at the Russian front. He had a scrape with the Nazi regime while making machine parts for the war effort in a large factory. One day before eating his lunch, he created a little jingle prayer in jest. In the company of his co-workers, he remarked:

  • Come Mr. Göbbels, be our guest
  • and give us what you promised us.
  • We don’t want margarine or herring,
  • we want what you eat and Mr. Göring.

Dr. Joseph Göbbels was Hitler’s Minister of Propaganda and Enlightenment. Through manipulation and distortion, he promised the German people victory. He promised them the good life. Of course, none of it ever materialized.

Hermann Göring was the leader of the National Socialist Party in Hitler’s government. Obviously, they both ate well and enjoyed a life of extravagance. Living in a dictatorship, no one was allowed to comment about Hitler and definitely not create political jokes.

The next day after the incident, my grandfather was interrogated and his co-workers were questioned about his comments. A man subsequently showed up to work side-by-side with him under the auspices of being a new recruit. He was dressed in a brand new uniform. Everyone knew the man was a member of the Gestapo as no one could afford a new work uniform during such hard times. The man continuously made negative comments about Hitler in an effort to make my grandfather acquiesce, which he did not do. Had he made a negative statement, he would have been led off to a concentration camp.

Joseph Göbbels committed suicide when the Soviet troops stormed Berlin on May 1, 1945. Hermann Göring surrendered to American forces in 1945. He was charged at the Nuremberg Trials. After a verdict of guilty and being sentenced to death, Göring escaped a fate of hanging by poisoning himself.

I wonder if any of the individuals responsible for war crimes repented? Even now, we see the remembrances of how cruel humans can be to one another. Only when we recognize ourselves as sinners and honestly return to purifying and recharging ourselves are we able to be enlightened and helped by God. We can always have another chance. That’s reality. Albert Einstein once said, “One cannot but be in awe when contemplating the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality.” When we turn away from the teachings of Jesus, His arms are still open. God is a God of “Second Chances.”

  • Red-stained the clean white robe
  • He wore, as blood did spill from every pore.
  • Then with His arms still limp and weak,
  • did lift me up and kiss my cheek.
  • Through your repentance did He say,
  • your sins have now been washed away.


The Butterfly Cometh offers powerful insight into putting the color back into life

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