German Photographer Helena Schätzle visits our Church

Memories don't leave like people do. Indeed, the morning of Sunday the 17th July'16 opened a window to the world in the times of World War II. The PYAT (Parish Youth Animation Team) invited Ms Helena Schätzle, a German photographer and author of the book '9645 Kilometres Of Memories', who has traveled over 26 countries trying to gather experiences of people who were subjected to the gory effects of the Nazi holocaust. She presented her research work in many national and international conferences and won many awards, including the prestigious Epson awards. You can see her work here

Helena's personal findings and stories from the Jews who survived the war corroborated Pope Francis' statement that a little bit of mercy can make the world less cold. The thought-provoking session unfolded to fall in line with the theme of the year - Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy (Papal bull of indiction, Misericordiae Vultus. Latin: "The Face of Mercy") [Click here to read the full text of the document “Misericordiae Vultus” (“The Face of Mercy”).

Ms Helena's grandfather served the Nazi army and probably would have decimated several innocent Jews. However, Helena decided to disallow the seeds of hatred to further germinate in her lineage. She bloomed into a song of peace to the chaotic world, bridging countries with compilation of moving narratives. Ms Helena shared a beautiful memoir of an elderly Jewish woman who was stung by the Nazi atrocities when she was young. Ideally, such a person will be filled with bitterness, but she gravitated towards practicing mercy. Today, she lives a deep and cheerful life. The audience, predominantly youth, took home the message of forgiveness and showing mercy to the undeserved.