This is one of the most remarkable stories I've ever read. The courage, the strength and the amount of faith in God this woman possessed is truly inspiring.
Corrie ten Boom and her family where prisoners of war during the German Occupation. Her father owned a watch shop and Corrie learned the intricacies of watch repair from her father. When the occupation first began, Corrie became part of the underground and was hiding Jews in an upstairs room which was concealed behind a false wall. Eventually the Germans raided Corrie's home and she, along with her father, sister Betsie and other family members were carted off to destinations unknown at the time. Eventually they ended up at Scheveningen and then after awhile to Ravensbruck where her father and Betsie died.
Living in deplorable conditions with infestations of lice and fleas they also suffered horrendous over-crowding and smells that would upset even the strongest of stomachs. Through it all Corrie and Betsie never lost their faith in God and preached His teaching to the other women prisoners as the truth and to provide hope in this crazy nightmare they were all suffering through.
Corrie was eventually released on a "clerical error" and later found out the week after her release, the women of her barracks were taken to their deaths in the gas chambers.
Upon Corrie's return to Holland she opened a place of "renewal" in Darmstadt in 1946 for people to come too. Another home in Bloemendaal served ex-prisoners and other war victims exclusively until 1950 when it began to receive peple in need of care from the population at large.
In 1959 Corrie was part of a group that visited Ravensbruck which was then in East Germany, to honor Betsie and the 96,000 other women who died there. This is where Corrie learned that her own release had been a clerical error and that one week later all women her age were taken to the gas chambers.
In 1968, Corrie ten Boom was 76-years-old and traveling non-stop in obedience to Betsie's certainty that they must "tell people." She traveled to 61 countries, including many "unreachable" ones on the other side of the iron curtain. In her mid 80's, poor health forced an end to Corrie's missionary journey and she retired to a "retirement house" in Orange County, California provided by friends. She was bedridden and unable to speak during the last 5 years of her life and finally passed away at 11:00p.m. on her 91st birthday, April 15, 1983.
What a legacy Corrie ten Boom has left behind. One of Corrie's favourite quotes: "Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for a future that only He can see." This was one remarkable woman who led a remarkable life and who is no doubt living a remarkable life in Heaven.!
February 16, 2011