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The Need of Refugees

From Our December 1938 Issue

E. C. H. Arnold

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Ashton Keynes, England. Every day the Cotswold Bruderhof receives by post urgent requests from non-Aryans, who have either already left Germany, Austria, or Italy, or who will have to leave almost immediately because they have been deprived of their means of livelihood. We are publishing a few extracts from letters received, to show our friends the urgency of most of these cases.

In October the Cotswold Bruderhof had already taken in ten non­-Aryan immigrants from Vienna, but now their numbers have increased to twenty. Our houses, cottages, and temporary buildings are absolutely full, and it is impossible for us to take in any more, apart from five or six children of parents who are either killed or in concentration camps, or otherwise incapable of keeping their children. We are in urgent need of addresses of people who could give shelter to refugees, even for a short time. Would anyone who is able to give hospitality to one or more of these unfortunate and suffering people write to us at once, and state clearly what kind of accommodation he can offer, and what kind of people he would be able to accommodate, and for how long? In a few months’ time we could take in about ten to twenty more refugees, and especially children, provided we can get enough money for building and equipment. Those who feel urged to help, after the shocking persecution in Germany during the last few weeks, but who are unable to offer accommodation themselves, could do a great deal by sending a donation to the Secretary of the Cotswold Bruderhof, Ashton Keynes, Wiltshire; for there is plenty of work and a real opportunity for useful service in this community for those who are so sadly deprived of their means of existence or of making use of their abilities for the common benefit.

With regard to the children, the Cotswold Bruderhof is suggesting a scheme of adoption. A child, with expenses for school clothing, full board, and lodging, costs us about £4 per month. Anyone who wishes to adopt a child by taking over financial responsibility up to that amount should write to the Headmaster, The Bruderhof School, Ashton Keynes, Wiltshire.…

We feel most concern about the children, and want especially to open our houses to them as soon as we have enough room, because they are the future, they are innocent, and their suffering is the greatest wrong of all. Nothing, therefore, can give greater joy than to take a few children out from a life of dreadful misery and a hopeless future, and to receive them into a happy community where they can be taught the principles of love, peace, and justice so that later on their energies can be diverted into useful channels for the common benefit of mankind.

Will anyone whose heart is stabbed by the awful misery of non-Aryan refugees, or of those persecuted because of their principles, or of the children, either give shelter to one or two himself or do his best to make it possible for us to welcome more of those who are living in such tragic circumstances?

Lotte Berger, a Jewish refugee Lotte Berger, a Jewish girl from Vienna, was one of the refugee children from the Kindertransport taken into the Cotswold Bruderhof in England in 1939.
Photograph courtesy of Lotte Berger's family
a group of Bruderhof families

Did you know that Plough is published by the Bruderhof, a living community of people seeking to follow Jesus together?

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