Corrie ten Boom
Corrie ten Boom and her family operated an underground movement in Holland during World War II, providing safe passage to Jews during the German occupation. Corrie's father owned a watch repair business; Corrie and her older sister Betsie remained unmarried and assisted their father in the shop. They were well-known for their kindness and hospitality, so it was natural for neighbors to turn to them for help. As they developed connections with others involved in the movement, their operation increased in scope and required both more sophisticated methods and more caution. A secret room was built in the house to hide the occupants in case of a raid. A buzzer system was installed to alert occupants to a raid or other emergency, and drills were held to ensure people could hide without leaving evidence. Signals were arranged to communicate when it was safe to enter the house.
The ten Boom family performed an important ministry during the war, but eventually the authorities became aware of their work and the family was arrested and taken to a political prisoner camp. Corrie and Betsie ten Boom spent nearly a year in a series of prison camps, under appalling conditions. Their deep Christian faith was key to survival. After the war, Corrie set up rehabilitation centers in the Netherlands, lectured about her experience, and taught others based on the Christian Gospels and themes of forgiveness. Corrie ten Boom's faith and ability to forgive are an inspiration; it takes an extraordinary person to survive such a harrowing experience and be able to forgive your persecutors.
The Hiding Place was an interesting memoir from a dark time in the history of humankind. ( )