Exploring the meaning of life…

Posts tagged ‘Anne Frank’

What does goodness look like?


Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart.  Anne Frank.

Warning, today’s blog contains some pictures that are hard to look at, but they accurately portray what happened in the concentration camps during the Holocaust.

Anne Frank was born on June 12th, 1929.  For her 13th birthday, her father bought her a book that Anne had seen in a shop window.  It was red and white with a checkered cloth cover and had a lock.  Anne, who wanted to be a journalist, turned it into a diary and wrote in it everyday.  She was thirteen, the age when girls like to chat with girlfriends about boys, have birthday parties and slumber parties, write notes back and forth at school and begin to fantasize about what their future might hold for  them. Unfortunately for Anne, most of her dreams were never  going to come true.

When Hitler began murdering Jews in Germany, she and her family moved to Amsterdam.  When they began to round up Jews in Amsterdam in 1942, she and her family were forced into hiding  in secret rooms above her father’s business.  They remained there until 1944 when someone tipped off the authorities.  When they were captured and sent to the Punishment Barracks they were considered hard criminals because they were hiding and were forced to perform hard labor for a time, after which they were scheduled to go to the Auschwitz  Concentration Camp.

Their hiding place above the business.

  The whole family was taken to Auschwitz, but they became separated from Anne’s father and never saw him again.  Upon their arrival, half of the 1019 Jews that were still alive were sent directly to the gas chamber and murdered – they were all under the age of 15 and deemed useless in performing labor.  Upon their arrival, Anne, Margot and their mother were stripped, their heads shaved and tattooed.  There was never adequate food, so Anne’s mother gave hers to her girls.  Anne contracted scabies and had to stay in the infirmary for a while where rats crawled over her every night.  Margot became so weak that she fell off of her bunk and died.  Anne died a few days later as did her mother.

This is what Anne faced at the concentration camp.

Anne’s father was the only one who survived the concentration camps.  When the war was over and he came home, he found that his friends had gone to their hiding place after the police left and saved Anne’s diary.  Of course, he was moved to tears to read her comments about the inherent goodness of mankind and finally convinced a publisher to publish it.  Now, it is second only to the Bible as the most read book in the world.  In the diary Anne wrote:  “I want to be useful or bring enjoyment to all people, even those I’ve never met.  I want to go on living after my death.  And that’s why I’m so grateful to God for having given me this gift, which I can use to develop myself and to express all that’s inside of me!”  Anne did achieve this dream.  Her goodness lives on in her words.  The goodness of her heart is amazing.  When you read this book you wonder if she was for real.  The answer is yes.  She lived and died at the hands of a madman who had nothing but hate in his heart.  She’s free now and I’m sure her whole family is together again and blissfully happy.  God blessed her talent during her short life to create for us a picture of what real goodness looks like. 

Tombstone of Anne and Margot Frank.



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