JERUSALEM — A Jewish woman who spoke about her experiences as a Holocaust survivor in Poland said she was forced to put her faith aside for the sake of her children and family.
Rabbi Eliezer Tchividjian, 74, who was born in Poland, said she felt an obligation to help Polish Jews during the Holocaust.
Tchividnian said her husband, an elderly Holocaust survivor, was sent to the gas chambers by Nazis.
When he returned to Poland, Tchildjian said he was treated as a “terrorist.”
“I was told to go to a concentration camp, I was told that I was a traitor,” Tchiliy said in an interview on Thursday.
“I knew that my children would have no way to know about my past.”
In 2014, Tcherbovsky wrote a book called “The Holocaust, a story of the people who survived the war,” that chronicles the Holocaust in Poland and in the former Soviet Union.
Tcherbovski was the first to publicly acknowledge the Holocaust, and Tchiljy, who is now an associate professor of Holocaust studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, wrote a new book about her life and work, called “Sister’s Song.”
In the book, Tchavelnik said that she had a very personal connection to the Holocaust and that she tried to keep that connection alive even when she had to leave her Jewish identity.
“When I was still in my 20s, I told my husband about the events that had happened in the Nazi era,” Tchaildjie said.
“He knew the meaning of the words I had said and he told me that I should not have to leave my Judaism.”
In her book, she said she also told her husband she wanted to leave Judaism, but he told her she had an obligation not to leave it.
“As a Jew, I had an understanding of the Holocaust,” Tchalidjie wrote.
“I wanted to do my part, but I had to take a step back from my Jewish identity.”
Tchilajie said she and her husband were given a choice.
“The second we left the Jewish community, I wanted to go with my husband, but we were forced to make that choice,” Tcherbejian told CBC News.
“We had to do what we had to to do and we had no other option.”
In Poland, the former leader of the ruling Law and Justice Party, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, was recently elected president and has vowed to push for a change in the country’s law that allows Jewish institutions to remain open.
“This is a very, very painful chapter in our history, a chapter of the history of our nation,” Kacowski told a news conference in Warsaw on Thursday, saying the country is ready for a new history.