5 2017

Kristallnacht: A Survivor’s Reflections and Insights for the Present Day

4:00PM - 6:00PM  

Congregation Shalom 87 Richardson Road
North Chelmsford, MA 01863

Please join speaker Anna Ornstein to remember Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, on Sunday, November 5 at 4:00 pm at Congregation Shalom in Chelmsford. Dr. Anna Ornstein is a Holocaust survivor, a Professor Emerita of Child Psychology at the University of Cincinnati, a Lecturer on Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and an author.

What happened on November 9 and 10, 1938? Dr. Ornstein will use her multi-faceted experience as a Holocaust survivor and a specialist in self-psychology to reflect and share insights based on this terrifying historic event.

At age 17, Anna and her mother were deported to Auschwitz from Hungary. Her father and two brothers died in the Holocaust. Her childhood sweetheart, Paul, survived a Hungarian forced labor camp. They found each other after the war, married, and eventually had three children. After attending medical school in Heidelberg, Germany from 1946 through 1951 and completing their training at the University of Cincinnati, both Anna and her recently deceased husband Paul became giants in the field of psychoanalytic self-psychology. Self psychology, an offshoot of Freud’s psychoanalytic theory, was the first large psychoanalytic movement recognizing empathy as an essential aspect of the therapeutic process of addressing human development and growth. In an interview in the New York Times, Anna included, “Self-psychology simply says, ‘Get to know the other — that the skin color, the religion is not what determines a human being.’”

As stated in an Amazon editorial review for Anna’s 2004 book My Mother’s Eyes: Holocaust Memories of a Young Girl, “After emigrating to the U.S., Anna seldom spoke of the experiences she suffered while a young girl. At a family Seder gathering, her family asked for a story from her past. In an evocative, understated passage, she shared a bit of the tragedy she saw through the eyes of a child. Every year she added to this tradition by sharing another chapter of the tragedies she witnessed and the small moments of grace in her survival. Through her family's support, Orenstein gained enough strength to share her experiences in My Mother's Eyes, in hopes of keeping the nightmare from ever happening again.”

In the words of Dr. Robert Krell, professor emeritus of the University of British Columbia, “Anna’s entire life has been informed and infused with her experiences. Her energy and curiosity, her inquiry into the human condition, her faith in meaningful relationships and the power of the psyche – all have enriched our understanding of human behavior. She is a powerhouse of creativity, a fearless explorer of what makes us tick.”

Congregation Shalom is located at 87 Richardson Road in North Chelmsford and is wheelchair accessible. For more information about this presentation call (978) 251-8091 or email


Editor’s Note: A photo of Dr. Anna Ornstein is available on request.


About Congregation Shalom

Founded in 1967, Congregation Shalom is a Reform Jewish community committed to education, spiritual growth, and Tikkun Olam (healing the world).

We are proud to be an extended family of equals - welcoming, caring, and inclusive. Together, we engage in religious observance, enjoy social activities, and pursue lifelong learning.

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