96 year-old holocaust victim visits school

    Students and faculty at Saint Joseph’s University got a rare visit from a survivor of the holocaust last week.

    Students and faculty at Saint Jospeh’s University got a rare visit from a survivor of the holocaust last week. 96 year-old Hermann Scheipers gave a vigorous 2-hour talk about being held in Dachau for over 4 years. But Scheipers is not Jewish, he’s a Catholic priest.
    Caption: Father Hermann Scheipers. Photo Credit: Steven J. Moff

    Listen:
    [audio: 091016pcholocaust.mp3]

    Father Scheipers was among 3000 Catholic priests held in Dachau. As the Allies closed in on the camp, the Nazis began preparing to exterminate the prisoners. Their intentions were so obvious that it reminded him of an old German saying that translates as: “you could feel it through a wooden shoe.”

    Scheipers: So there was a great fear – what will they do with us? What will they do when the Americans get closer to us?

    Richard Libowitz teaches holocaust studies. He says survivors like Scheipers can tell the story in a way no book can.

    Libowitz: It’s special to students – as Catholics – to see that this did happen not just to the Jews – but for people who did anything the Reich did not like.

    Father Schiepers will be speaking in the United States for a week.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.