Remembering Kristallnacht 🙋

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Remembering Kristallnacht 🙋


November 7, 2023
6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Stephen Wise Free Synagogue

To “never forget,” we must ensure that memory lives on…

In the fall of 1938, Nazi loyalists burned 190 synagogues, destroyed 7,500 Jewish-owned shops, and sent some 30,000 German Jews to concentration camps. Most of this violence took place across dozens of German cities on the night of Nov. 9, 1938 – Kristallnacht, or “Crystal Night,” named for the sparkling shards of broken glass that littered streets and sidewalks after the vandalism.

This November 7, join Stephen Wise Free Synagogue in remembering Kristallnacht as Holocaust survivor Fred Schoenfeld recounts his experience evading the Nazis as a young boy in Slovakia.

We’ll also be hearing from Aaron Ginns about 3GNY, a nonprofit founded by the grandchildren of Holocaust survivors dedicated to preserving and teaching the lessons of the Holocaust and supporting survivors’ descendants. 3GNY helps organizations like ours start their own networks of second- and third-generation survivors — an amazing opportunity to meet and connect with other people around our shared past. If we have enough interest, we can discuss starting our own group!

Alfred “Fred” Schoenfeld is a Holocaust Survivor who survived the Nazi regime as a young boy in Slovakia. During World War II, the citizens in his hometown of Presov turned against their Jewish neighbors, and anyone over the age of nine was ordered to wear the Star of David on their shirt. Fred tells the story of how he and his father Simcha survived by hiding in the attic of a warehouse, how the Schoenfelds eventually escaped into the Tatra mountains, and their immigration to the United States in 1948. Over the past five years Fred has been talking to middle and high school students in New York City about the series of events that beset his family and the Jewish people, and their lingering impact.

Passionate about preserving the personal stories of Holocaust survivors, Aaron Ginns is honored to be involved with 3GNY. The grandson of Holocaust survivor Ludwig “Larry” Hiss, Aaron first became involved with 3GNY as a volunteer WEDU speaker in 2021 before taking the role as 3GNY’s education and outreach coordinator. Aaron holds a bachelor’s in jazz studies from the University of Michigan and a master’s in music from NYU. He lives in Brooklyn and can often be found playing with his band LAZR WOLF.


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