Story of the Ninety-Three Girls
Warsaw, Jewish girls, stripped of everything by the Gestapo, are commanded to prepare themselves for the pleasure of Nazi soldiers. Rather than submit to this, they follow the path of martyrs who preceded them: they pour out their hearts in a final prayer and they swallow poison.
We have cleansed our bodies and purified our souls.
And now we are at peace.
Death holds no terror; we go to meet it.
We have served our God while alive;
We know how to hallow Him in death.
A deep covenant binds all ninety-three of us:
Together we studied God’s Torah; together we shall die.
We have chanted Psalms, and are comforted.
We have confessed our sins, and are strengthened.
We are now prepared to take our leave.
Let the unclean come to afflict us; we fear them not.
We shall drink the poison and die, innocent and pure,
as befits the daughters of Jacob.
To our mother Sarah we pray: “Here we are!
We have met the test of Isaac’s Binding!
Pray with us for the people Israel.”
Have mercy for Your people, who love You.
For there is no more mercy in man.
Reveal Your lovingkindness.
Save Your afflicted people.
Cleanse and preserve Your world.
The hour of Ne’ilah approaches. Quiet grow our hearts.
One request we make of our brethren, wherever they may be,
Say Kaddish for us, for all ninety-three, say Kaddish.
“After Pappenheim’s death, ninety three of the girls of the Beth Jakob School in Poland, which Pappenheim had supervised, committed suicide when the Nazis decided to turn the school into a brothel.” – from Dancing with death: The Intellectual opposition to Zionism