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Sunday, March 8, 2015

Just A Pause...

I was looking at a photo which was posted in a Jewish group for those of us who have roots in Poland. Then I came across the picture...the picture that was captioned that he attended his first bar- and bat-mitzvah ceremony, and that he enjoyed attending....and I knew that, that could've been him.

The bar-mitzvah. Not that he isn't or wouldn't be; it's just the family is so assimilated. The rest of the caption read that his mother was asking herself where the time has gone. I wonder why she didn't say something like, "The funny thing is that, that could've been him." Maybe she was thinking it behind the computer screen, though I doubt it. 

Then when I went to type her name into the search bar again, I came across another cousin with the same first name. The pictures were there, too. The kids look Jewish! 

They can't escape who they are, even if they don't know now—the younger kids couldn't know now, anyway (Could they? I doubt it. They wouldn't be told at least at their age—and they're triplets—and I don't think that their mother—who I should clarify is an in-law cousin—would let them use iPads, etc. at their age.). The older kids might not know (although the older one maybe attended the seder shel b'nai-mitzvah because he knows and wanted to see his heritage firsthand), and the adults are either ignorant and/or naive or just in plain denial.

The younger kids look Jewish because they look like their dad (I see his paternal grandmother, his kids' and my great-grandmother, in him.). They may also look Jewish because of their mom (I suspect that she may be Jewish. If she is Jewish, what a shanda that she's of a younger generation and feels like she has to hide it—after all, one of the younger generations is coming out with it. "Choose ye this day..." and "relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise elsewhere...." Why be afraid to stand with our people?)

The older kid can't escape that he's Jewish either way (As I recall, his great-great-granddad was also Andrew Rusnak—and he is certainly a descendant of him either way; that much I know. If my memory is correct, then we are third cousins and right in the same generation.). In any case, you can trace our lines right back to the Anusi Gyorgy "György Kvetkovits" Rusznák HaLevi of Kassa, Ausztria Magyarország (and he and his bashert Erzesbet Molnarová became Anusuim and moved to Aranyida once Szlovakia became a part of Ausztria. Keep in mind that the 1700s-1900s were one of the biggest time periods in which Ashkenazi Jews became Anusim. Even in supposedly-religiously-free Czech Austria, Fritz Kohn became Frederick Kerry, 63 years after the Hungarian Revolution and after Hungary was co-opted by Austria.). 

The adults like me can either be naive or in denial (and I was still a kid when I found out that we are Jewish; since, Biblically speaking, the bar-mitzvah and bat-mitzvah age is 20 years. I was 18 years, six months, and two days old when I posted a copy of Great-Great-Granddad Czarnecki's death certificate on Ancestry.com—I was almost one-and-a-half years short of being a bat-mitzvah, and I was able to confirm that I'm Jewish by seeking, enlisting, and finding)—and I know that those who were b'nai mitzvah before me could've known and been honest about it.

After all, the non-Photoshopped pictures don't lie. The draw toward our heritage does not lie. As Samuel told Saul according to one of the recently-read haftarot, "[G-d] is not a man, that He should repent." 

The records also do not lie, at least as far as the records that had honest information givers and honest transcribers. "Acquitted [to marry]", for example, is a damning thing to read on a marriage dispensation record, especially for apparently such good Slovakian and Czechoslovakian Catholics (which we weren't. We were Jews in Hungary and Austria Hungary.). Also, again, the non-Photoshopped pictures don't lie—just as the younger kids look like their dad's family, those Rusznaks of Kassa looked like the apparently-Czechoslovakian Andrew Rusnak (and as I've said in the past, that's when the "Relatives asked for money" lid got blown off the story—and I figured out that help was needed by Rusznaks instead of money by Foskos).

Those reminders and pauses will, by the way, somehow show up for the rest of my life or my time here in this age. I at least can say, "I am not ashamed of the Gospel," and "[T]here is nothing secret that will not be revealed". After all, I was led and I chose to say, "I'm a Jew. I'm a bat Anusim. They chose to persecute me in the Name of my Messiah, but they could not take my heritage away from me." I wonder how many of my family can and will be able to say that instead of offer up even excuses such as "That was then; this is now" and "Jewishness is religious, not ethnic" (which is the real meaning behind "Judaism is a religion, not a [race, nationality, etc.]"—as if the Judeans were never an ethnic or even ethnoreligious group). 

They, like me, can either choose to be like Esther and Paul (and Paul especially, for that he was Jewish was obvious and not obscurable as it was for Esther) or choose to be like forefathers such as Andrew Rusnak (and despite that rebringing up a matter will separate close friends, that the inquity will be felt down to the third and fourth generations remains).
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