How Do Jews Retaliate when Threatened with Extinction? They Survive…and Multiply!

Hi friends!  I have a very heartwarming story to share today.  In December 2015 I was especially blessed to be invited to participate in a Christian Leaders Seminar at the Yad Vashem Museum and School for International Studies.  It was an incredible experience, but one thing made it even more special than any other.

A pastor in our class happened to be the son of Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds.  As we arrived for the seminar, that name meant little to most of us.  However, by the end of that 8-day seminar, we discovered just what a hero Roddie Edmonds was!  An incredible human being, he saved the lives of 200 Jews during WWII. That classmate, Chris Edmonds, shared the heroic story of his father, and while there at Yad Vashem for the seminar, got word his father was named Righteous Among the Nations, Israel’s highest honor granted to non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust.

In March 2016, Chris was invited to share his father’s story before an enthusiastic crowd of 18,000 at the annual AIPAC Conference.  (You can see that video here.)

Recently, The Jewish Foundation of the Righteous produced a video, featuring Chris’ journey to Germany where his father commanded a unit of men captured by Nazi forces, then stood firm in protecting Jewish soldiers under his command.  Four of Edmonds’ men (all Jewish) tell the story, and it’s well worth seeing!  In the end, you see their revenge to the Nazis who hoped to wipe them out: they lived (thanks to Master Sergeant Edmonds) and multiplied!

Enjoy!

https://vimeo.com/198357872

 

 

American Soldier Who Saved Jews up for Congressional Medal of Honor

In November-December 2015, I attended a Christian Leaders Seminar at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum and Research Center in Jerusalem.  One of my classmates was Chris Edmonds, whose father was a true American hero.  In fact, while there for the seminar, news was released that his father, Roddie Edmonds, was named Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem.  That honor is reserved for non-Jewish citizens who risked their own lives to protect the Jews during the Holocaust.

We were privileged to hear the incredible story directly from Chris (a pastor from Tennessee), and we rejoiced with him.  Then, in March 2016, I was present when Chris told his dad’s story to 20,000 conference attendees at the annual AIPAC Conference.  Now, efforts are underway to posthumously award Master Sgt Roddie Edmonds the Congressional Medal of Honor, the highest military recognition given to an American service member.

Below I’ll share two separate videos.  The first is Chris’ presentation at the AIPAC Conference where he did a masterful job honoring his father.  The second is the latest video hitting social media in attempts to promote Master Sgt Edmonds’ bid for a Congressional Medal of Honor.  Edmonds was an incredible man of God, a fantastic soldier, and understood the importance of saving Jews.  I’m praying Congress will show him the honor he deserves.  Will you join me?

Enjoy the videos!

 

Now is the Time…Please Help Honor An American Hero and Friend of the Jews

Hi friends!  Today’s post is somewhat personal, in that I’m going to ask a personal favor.  Will you join me in bringing honor to a man well worth honoring?

In December 2015 I had the blessed privilege to meet Chris Edmonds, a fellow student at a Christian Leaders Seminar at Yad Vashem (Israel’s Holocaust Museum and Research Center).  While there, Chris’ dad was awarded recognition as Righteous Among the Nations, the highest honor a person can receive for risking their life to save Jews during the Holocaust.

You simply MUST know the story of Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds, who stood toe-to-toe with a Nazi commandant, with a gun to his head, and resolutely refused to give up his Jewish comrades to be murdered by the Nazi regime.  Hear Chris tell his dad’s story:

I was at that AIPAC Conference to hear the audience of almost 20,000 roar with American pride as Chris narrated his dad’s heroic story.  I have also remained in contact with Chris and know of the battle they are fighting to get his dad appropriately honored by the United States Congress!

Here is where you come in!  House Bill 4863 has now been put before the House of Representatives, requesting that Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.  Israel has recognized him with their greatest honor…it is time for America to do the same!

Americans, please write your Senators and Representatives, asking them to support HB4863 that will award Master Sergeant Edmonds a well-deserved Congressional Medal of Honor.  It is simple to do, and can be done online.

Not only am I asking you to write your Congressmen, but I’m also going to ask you to do something I’ve never asked before.  Please get this out on social media!  Post it on Facebook, Tweet it, reblog it, G+ it, forward via email or whatever you can do to spread the word.  (Click on the title of this post, scroll to the bottom and you will find social media buttons that make it easy to get the word out!)  Let’s help this story go viral, and let’s flood Congress with requests to honor this man!  (PS: It needs to happen soon, so don’t procrastinate…do it right away!)

Finally, some of you are saying, “But I’ve never written a Congressman before. I don’t know what to say.”  I’ve got you covered!  They like short and simple…and if you can’t come up with your own words, use these:

I am writing to express my support of HB4863, and to ask you to do likewise.  This bill would award the Congressional Medal of Honor to Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds, a true American hero who risked his life on multiple occasions to save the lives of fellow soldiers, including American Jews who were singled out to be murdered by the Nazis in Stalag 9A & B during World War II.  I ask you to be an advocate on behalf of this valiant hero who deserves to be honored.  The nation of Israel has recognized his heroics and given him their highest honor (Righteous Among the Nations), now it is time for America to do the same!  Please support HB4863.

There you go!  No excuses!  Just do it!  I’ve written my Congressmen…will you do the same?  Thank you in advance for your partnership in helping bring honor to this hero!  I’ll keep you posted on news as I hear it.

My Favorite Moment from AIPAC!

Hi friends!  During the lull between Good Friday and Resurrection Day, I want to harken back to the AIPAC Policy Conference once again.  For me, the highlight was hearing the story of a true American hero.  Let me set the stage.

Last December  I traveled to Israel to attend a leadership seminar at Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Museum and Research Center in Jerusalem, and was blessed to meet Pastor Chris Edmonds.  Pastor Chris was attending the same seminar, but had a much greater purpose in being there.  Yad Vashem was in final stages of designating his father, Master Sergeant Roddy Edmonds, Righteous Among the Nations.  That designation is the highest honor bestowed by the Israeli government upon non-Jews who risk their lives in order to save the lives of Jews.

It was while we were at that seminar that Pastor Chris got word of the official designation, which set off a seemingly never-ending string of interviews with worldwide journalists.  As a group, we had private time with Pastor Chris to hear his father’s story and to celebrate with him.  Needless to say, Chris is a dear friend of those of us who shared those moments with him.

On January 27, in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Chris and his family accepted the designation on behalf of his now-deceased father in a ceremony attended by Steven Spielberg and President Obama (among other dignitaries) at the Israeli Embassy in Washington DC.  The Master Sergeant is only the fifth American designated Righteous Among the Nations…and the first from the US military.

Now, fast forward to the AIPAC Policy Conference, where Pastor Chris was invited to share his father’s story with 20,000 people just prior to speeches by Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Republican presidential candidates! It was my favorite part of the Conference!

Here is the 9-minute video of Pastor Chris Edmonds sharing the incredible story.  Enjoy!