Kristallnacht

As I read The Kristallnacht by Werner Weinberg, I cannot help but imagine myself being there. Hearing the echoes of SS boots marching endlessly down the streets, the shattering, not only of glass, but also of my and my family’s dreams, and seeing the fires of hate engulf the synagogue where I had prayed with my family and beseeched and searched for G-d, it becomes so real. The fear resounds down every street, in every home, and in every heart. I can imagine the hopelessness and the anger I would have felt to see the sweat of my brow and the dedication placed in my business and home, which I had one day hoped to pass to my children, being taken away from us because of who I am. When my parents and I visited our family in Israel this last year, I remember walking down Allenby St. and seeing an old, abandoned synagogue, and I cannot forget the sadness that welled up in my heart. I could imagine the husbands and wives and little children gathering in this holy house of G-d to praise and soak in His comfort, grace, and strength. I could envision the warm light emanating from within and out onto the street through the beautiful mosaics that filled each window. Remembering this feeling, I can only feel the hope that seemed lost on this night when everything that had a part of my heart was destroyed and had fallen to ashes. With this loss, I cherish my family even the more for without them, I would be lost, but empty and nothing would I be without G-d.