We publish here a short report on the congress that took place on December 5, 2017 at the Land of Israel Museum in Ramat Aviv and which included a section on the children hidden in monasteries during the Shoah.

dorot hemshekh

The organization “Dorot HaHemshekh” (The Next Generations) organized a congress on December 5, 2017 about the rising up after the Shoah, under the title “Where to? To the Land of Israel”. Within this context, and among other subjects, the subject of the Jewish children who were saved thanks to the different monasteries, where merciful sisters and brothers served, was also discussed. The congress took place at the Land of Israel Museum in Ramat Aviv and about 500 people participated.

Among the speakers in the congress was Leah Balint, who spoke about the monastery which hid her. Leah says that the monasteries did this according to their own initiative, each monastery acting as it could, and without receiving instructions from higher authorities. She adds that no sister or brother tried to convert the children to Christianity but rather took care of the children with great commitment according to each one’s understanding (mostly these monasteries were Franciscan although there were other monasteries too).

One of those who participated in the congress, with whom one of the women hidden in the monasteries keeps in contact until today, was Father Gregor Pawlowski. Father Gregor is himself a survivor of the Shoah, a son of the Jewish people, who was hidden by different Poles during the Shoah, wandering from village to village. Later he decided to join the Church and became a priest. Today, he lives in Israel, serving in the church in Jaffa.

For an interview with Leah Balint in 1995 see here