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Volume 2, Issue 6 June 2009


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Marcia's Musings

Ken Nix

Friday, 6/26/2009

The Last Port O’ Call

Marcia Smeenk


Fifty people sat shivering by the river side waiting for a river ferry to come by.  When it did not come they wept and pleaded for mercy.   They cried aloud to heaven to help them but to no avail.  The patrols would be around in a short time.  Then, a fishing boat happened by and they all attempted to board.  Many fell into the frigid water that late November.  The war in Europe was ongoing.  There was no relief – only a shuttling from one location to another.  Where is home?  There is none – only the waves lapping on the side of the boat.  At last the refugees had a place to sit, but nothing to eat.  Where will they go?  Headed into the North Sea, the first stop was in Norway but they were not allowed off the boat.  “Refugees”, they said, “away”.  Next stop was Denmark, then Holland, then England.  Nowhere to go, nowhere to rest – “go back” they said, you are not wanted here.  The boat goes on in circles, not knowing where to drop its precious cargo of humans, only because they were the outcast in this time of war. 



Germany had occupied Denmark in 1940, but the Jewish community was relatively unaffected at that time.  However, in early fall of 1943, word had reached the Danish resistance that the Nazis were planning to deport the 8,000 Danish Jews, most of which lived in Copenhagen.  When word of a planned German raid came, the news spread quickly, and the Jews were immediately hidden in Protestant churches, Catholic churches, hotels, huts, cellars, warehouses, on farms and in hospitals by their non-Jewish friends and neighbors.   The two German transport vessels, posed to carry thousands, left Copenhagen harbor with a mere 202.  The Danes knew the Jews could not remain in hiding forever so they devised a plan to transport them across the sound to Sweden.  The only boats still allowed in Denmark were the fishing boats, and so they went, with 12 to 14 refugees at a time hidden within them.  By the end of October, fishermen had ferried over 7,200 Jews to safety by crossing the narrow body of water to neutral Sweden.  Great personal risk was taken by all those involved in this rescue.  Even the Danish police played a large role, and many of them were captured and sent to concentration camps.



Who shall defend the defenseless?  Whose duty is it to care for our brother?  It is ours, no matter what.  What became of the other boat people of World War II?   Many were returned – back from whence they came, and were sent to die.  But many were saved.   Who helped them?  Their reward in heaven is great.  Many died for them.  Many put their lives on the line and many received death for their efforts.  We are to love all.  You have not met anyone that God does not love.  Put your life on the line here on earth and see that line building up treasures in heaven.  The flesh is nothing, the spirit is all. Lay down your life for your brother and if it is lost, you have won.



What happened to those who rescued the unwanted?   The heroes whose attempts saved many are in their graves awaiting the resurrection and hearing “well done thou good and faithful servant.”  Go and do likewise, for soon true believers will become the unwanted, the unmarked (Rev 13:16-17).  May God bless the nations and people who are not afraid to provide help in time of need.



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