Corrie Ten Boom

Friday, Nov/ 18                              

I’m writing this blog for those who never heard of Corrie Ten Boom, or have little knowledge of her.  It’s an amazing story.  Willem Ten Boom opened a clock shop in Haarlem, Holland in 1837.  From 1837 on the Ten Boom family had weekly prayer meetings for Israel, Jerusalem, and the Jews.  The prayer meetings continued for 100 years, through Willem’s son, Casper, right up to World War II.  After Holland was conquered by Nazi Germany, the prayer meetings continued, and the Ten Boom family became part of the Dutch underground.  They harbored an estimated 800 Jews who were slated for the gas chambers during the first three years of the war.  Casper had four children, Willem, Corrie, Betsie, and Nollie, all of them part of the “safe house.”  Nephews Christiaan and Peter were also involved in the Dutch underground.  Corrie became a ringleader in the Dutch underground, constantly searching for more “safe houses.”  The family had a number of secret hiding places in the house.  The Gestapo finally showed up in Feb. 28, 1944.  The family had been betrayed and all the above family members were arrested and charged for harboring Jews and/or being members of the Dutch underground.  The Gestapo remained for several days to nab anyone that came to the house.  Despite that, six people, two Jewish men, two Jewish women, and two members of the Dutch underground, were quietly existing in a secret room behind Corrie’s bedroom.  Casper, 80 years old, died in prison ten days later.  Before his death, when he was asked if he knew that he could die for helping the Jews, he said “It would be an honor to die for God’s ancient people.”  Corrie and Betsie spent 10 months in three different prisons.  They spent their time witnessing to other prisoners (and guards, if they would listen), many of whom were converted to Christ.  Along with other Jews, they were treated unmercifully, but continued ministering to others.  They were now in the Ravensbruck Prison, where all women prisoners were slated for the gas chambers.  Betsie died there at the age of 59.  Corrie was miraculously released one week before all these women prisoners were sent to their death.  It went down as a clerical error, but it was obviously God’s handiwork.

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