Out of the Holocaust
Peter Volodja Boe
The details of my (and my brother’s) birth are unknown. My memories begin in Latvia. DNA tests strongly indicate that we are of Belarusian-Jewish origin, meaning that we might have been born in southeastern Latvia or in Belarus bordering on southern Latvia. Our mother is listed as “Miss Sinegins” in our personal records. Russian authorities stated our years of birth, mine 1937, my brother’s 1939. We plucked the specific dates out a bowl.
In 1943, I was about 6, my brother about 4 or 5, when our assumed mother felt it necessary to turn us over to the Baldone Children’s Home in Latvia due to ill health and extreme poverty. About a year later, the orphans and caretakers at that home trekked to Riga, Latvia’s capital city, to be transported to the Majori Children’s Home. We were there but a few months when we all were transported by ship, under German oversight, to Germany in October, 1944. We along with many other orphans resided at several homes and residences. Approximately half of our group of 130 orphans was transported to America after the war. Some died. Many were transported to other countries, and some remained in Germany due to ill health or other factors. My brother and I resided in foster homes and at a children’s home in St, Paul, Minnesota, until 1950, when we were adopted by the Rev. Victor Boe, former Dean of Men at Concordia College, and Hilda Boe, former librarian at the college.
I became a Lutheran pastor like my adoptive father. Following ordination, I served as a missionary in Nigeria. I have served at many parishes, and continue to minister at a small congregation in Iowa at age 80.
My prayer is that this book will fulfill the will and mission of God in Jesus Christ. The most effective means of achieving this is through direct person-to-person communication, by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit. In the absence of the Spirit, this and all other publications have no meaning or purpose. Words and inert objects alone cannot transmit God’s power, and we cannot convert anyone to the way of Christ. He does this through us, at his own timing and initiative. His light always conquers all forces of darkness. When we try to pressure anyone toward change, freedom of choice may manifest in resistance and rebellion.
Through the Spirit, my hope is that every reader of this book will obtain inner strength for daily living, through the most difficult times in life’s journey. Go and seek out a genuine, live Christian. Open your inner eyes, unblocked by prejudice and self-worship, and see the stars and saints of light all around you! There are multitudes! Life in Christ is a day-by-day miracle, totally impossible by any human strength or ambition. If Christ and his empowerment are not present at our very weakest point, he is not our savior at all. When we become fully rooted in Christ, we become a new creation, beautiful and wonderful! Jesus is ever at your door, knocking to walk into your life. Let him in, now, during this life! Without him, all the highest glories of this life evaporate, guaranteed. Choose life over death, joy over sorrow, harmony over conflict and war!
Jesus says we cannot be held accountable for what we do not know. May this and similar testimonies tear away your inner blinds, forever, for your sake and eternal destiny! Hope, light, and joy lie before us all!