Reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views (1/17)
“Part of the Family” by Jason Hensley is a wonderful tribute to all Jewish families who endured torture and crimes against their person. It is a topic that many refuse to discuss or choose to ignore. Many of us, myself included, were so wrapped up in Hitler’s movement and concentration camps that not much thought was given about the children of that terror.
Knowing that they were not going to survive, parents sent their children to live in safer countries with people they didn’t know. The children, mostly young were in shock and never knew if they would ever see their families again. They were placed in communities where they had to learn a new language and customs. The families that took them in knew they were taking a great risk in housing these children, but did so with love and compassion.
Hensley provides readers with a very human aspect of their survival by having them tell their stories without altering any of their thoughts or words. These individuals come from different villages and the impact of the Holocaust is different for each one of them.
The author starts out by providing excellent information and background on Christadelphians. Quite honestly, I didn’t have a clue about them nor had I heard anyone discuss them. Christadelphians consider themselves a worldwide family, bound by the love of the Bible, and a love bond of trust and hospitality for all. They do have some differences from other Christian communities, however, that does not preclude them from working will all Christians.
Hensley’s writing is a valuable lesson and tribute that will never be read about in history books, or seen on TV. He provides photographs, words from the families that took these children in and some general information about the Holocaust.
“Part of the Family” by Jason Hensley is engrossing to read, informative, and written with great passion. I can’t imagine having to live through the things these children and families endured, and then share their experiences. So many families that I have read about previously couldn’t even talk about these things.