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Aarica Quinn, 5th Grade

December 1, 2015
Reading Class for Advanced Students
West Noble Middle School, Ligonier, Indiana

Students were assigned to give a Book Talk on a book of their choice. Aarica wrote her Book Talk about Facing the Lion: Memoirs of a Young Girl in Nazi Europe by Simone Arnold Liebster and delivered it to her class. She also shared a poster she made about the book.

Aarica Quinn and her teacher Darin Kauffman

Aarica Quinn and her teacher Darin Kauffman

“Facing the Lion”

Imagine that you are living on the brink of World War ll. Your family and your freedom slowly dwindling till it was a single thread and you were put in a school that took away your freedom and treated you horridly because you didn’t salute Hitler. This actually happened to one little girl named Simone Arnold.

She started with a normal life like you and me. She was taught by her dad to paint, she went to school, had homework, and probably even had a bed time, but that all changed when World War ll started.

One day after school she heard a knock on the door, it was the nazi police, who had taken her dad away. Later she found herself taken away from her mom and put into a school where she was facing a lion. That just happens to be what she calls her story. She had even gotten beaten.

(Read out of book page 111

It was terrible to watch that inhuman punishment machine in action. Now it was my turn. With clenched teeth, I presented my hand, waiting for her iron “justice”. But I also looked at Fraulein Lederle’s eyes. I was determined to face the beating courageously because I was being punished for talking about God.

In her previous school she refused to heil Hitler. She was yelled at and embarrassed in front of the whole school, because she would not heil Hitler. Now I bet you are wondering why she would not heil Hitler. Her parents and Simone made the decision before World War ll that they were going to be Jehovah’s Witnesses. As a Jehovahs Witness she put her trust in Jehovah God and not a man. Since Hitler was a man she would not put her trust in him. On numerous occasions she could have heiled Hitler and been freed, because she was loyal to her faith she just would not. Here is one occasion.

(Read out of book page 117)

“But in order that your choice will be an informed one” he continued, “I’ll read the outcome of a stubborn decision.” I had heard it before: At age 14, the juvenile leaves the home to become a maid or to go to prison, or even to a concentration camp. “Whoever doesn’t bend, will break,” he said, a favorite Nazi proverb. “A wrong choice will lead you to where your parents are.”

“You have two documents – you can sign this one and be free today, or you can sign that one stating your decision to stay a Bible Student.” I picked up the paper stating that I would stay a Bible Student and signed it in front of the Judge.

I recommend this book to anyone who likes to read times where they stay strong to their faith even when everything has gone wrong.