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Sharing the experience of hosting the Lutheran World Federation Tenth Assembly
21–31 July 2003
Winnipeg Manitoba Canada

Home » In Convention » LWF 2003 » Reflections » Stories » Healing Surprise Send to a friend     print

A Healing Surprise

LWF Assembly delegate Ilse Philippi, from Romania, participated in a pre-assembly visit to Ontario, Canada. One of her hosts was Margaretha Ehrlich, who came from the same area in Romania a number of years ago.

In conversation, they have discovered an unbelievable connection. Margaretha had been detained in a concentration camp in Russia from 1945 to 1947.
Left to right: Vi Cook, the Rev Eric Reble (St Peter's, Kitchener ON),  Ilse Philippi (Evangelische Kirche Augsburgischen Bekenntnisses in Rumänien), Margaretha Ehrlich (St James, St Jacobs ON).

Ilse mentioned that her father had also been in a concentration camp at that time. Further discussion revealed that it was the same camp and when Ilse gave her father's name, Margaretha realized she knew him. She had been the youngest girl in the camp and as she passed through the gates he had always called her by her first name. She had felt he was like a father to her—healing for her in her situation.

Now Margaretha has extended hospitality, quite unknowingly, to her "sister". Their time together has brought back many memories and with many tears they have completed a healing cycle.

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