Toby Kirsch

 

Brief History

Toby Kirsh was born in 1911 in Warsaw, Poland. Not long after she was born, however, her family moved to Belgium. In 1933, German Jews began to flee to the country, following Hitler's rise to power. On May 10th, 1940, the German Army marched into Belgium, and after only seventeen days of fighting, conquered the country. Mrs. Kirsh's husband, David Kirsh, had been forced to give up his schooling after the German invasion, and soon after, he joined a Belgian resistance group (Mouvment National Belge). Mrs. Kirsh and her husband fought and hid from the Nazis until they were able to move - with the support of the resistance group - to the Ardennes region of Belgium in 1941. Here, Mrs. Kirsh took on the responsibility of transporting children out of danger in Brussels to safe shelters and houses elsewhere. During the next four years, Mrs. Kirsh and her husband saw very little of one another. Mr. Kirsh moved constantly, fighting with the resistance, and Mrs. Kirsh spent many of her days transporting children to safety. During her time helping the resistance, Mrs. Kirsh saved about 60 children. After liberation by US troops in 1945, Mrs. Kirsh and her husband moved back to an apartment in Brussels. Mrs. Kirsh gave birth to her first daughter, Estelle, two years later. Not long after, they obtained visas and moved to the United States, where Mrs. Kirsh and her husband had their second daughter, Regina, in 1950.

 

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Calendar of Events

Under Siege Again? Holocaust Distortion and the Rise of Hate Crimes Against Jews

To commemorate International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 76th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination and concentration camp, join us for a conversation about how antisemitism at the international, national, and regional levels fuel holocaust distortion, as well as the challenges in prosecuting religiously-based hate crimes locally. Featuring Michael Brovner, Chief of the Queens County District Attorney’s Hate Crimes Bureau in New York City, and Mark Weitzman, Director of Government Affairs at the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Please Register via Zoom at:  https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-E2sbLFKTZOm08NuRWn1Vg

Lessons of White Nationalism, Racism, and Government

The Holocaust, Genocide and Interfaith Education Center invites you to an interdisciplinary Teach-In with faculty and students on Feb. 2nd at 7 pm: "Lessons of White Nationalism, Racism, and Government,” featuring; Rev. Thomas Franks, Rev. Dr. Courtney Bryant, Dr. Jonathan Keller, and Dr. Jeff Horn. They will speak for ten minutes each followed by questions and discussion. The United States faces a reckoning: serious issues divide Americans. Blatant racism, sexism, Antisemitism, Islamophobia, and violence are constantly on display. However, this nation has pledged that the respect and care of every living being and non-violent change can unite us in our democratic values. As John F. Kennedy said in 1961, “Let both sides explore what problems unite us.” We must seek understanding to face the challenges of our time. At Manhattan College, we seek dialogue, and the critical exchange of ideas as we engage with one another equally and dream of a better future. In keeping with Lasallian values, the Manhattan College community will redouble educational efforts for our students to undertake campus-wide reflection on teaching and our core values of civic responsibility, racial justice, and moral integrity. This Interdisciplinary Teach-In is a forum with expert faculty from Manhattan College; Campus Ministry and Social Action, History, Political Science and Religious Studies. Student representatives will submit questions beforehand to ensure the inclusion of student voices in this forum. Please join us via google meet: https://tinyurl.com/teachinfeb2 Please submit questions for Q&A: https://tinyurl.com/hgiquestions

Feb17

Who Is My Neighbor?: Race, Culture, and American Life

The Judith Plaskow Lecture of Women and Religion will be presented by M. Shawn Copeland, Ph.D., Professor Emerita of Theology at Boston College. This lecture interprets the ‘Parable of the Good Samaritan’ as told by the Jewish rabbi Jesus of Nazareth and recorded in the Christian Scriptures in order to probe its usefulness for contemporary living. Civility, decency, respect, along with basic democratic values seem to be under assault around the globe. Perhaps, critical consideration of the basic command––to love one’s neighbor as oneself––might help us recover “the better angels of our nature.”

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