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RIGHTEOUS AMONG THE NATIONS ( Hebrew
Hebrew
: חֲסִידִי אֻמּוֹת הָעוֹלָם‎, khasidei umót ha'olám "righteous (plural) of the world's nations") is an honorific used by the State of Israel
Israel
to describe non-Jews who risked their lives during the Holocaust
Holocaust
to save Jews from extermination by the Nazis .

The term originates with the concept of "righteous gentiles ", a term used in rabbinic Judaism to refer to non-Jews , called ger toshav , who abide by the Seven Laws of Noah
Seven Laws of Noah
.

CONTENTS

* 1 Bestowing * 2 Righteous settled in Israel
Israel
* 3 Other signs of veneration * 4 Number of awards by country * 5 See also * 6 References * 7 Bibliography * 8 External links

BESTOWING

Memorial tree in Jerusalem, Israel
Israel
honoring Irena Sendler
Irena Sendler
, a Polish Roman Catholic nurse who saved 2,500 Jews when it was forbidden

When Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem
, the Shoah Martyrs ' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority, was established in 1953 by the Knesset
Knesset
, one of its tasks was to commemorate the "Righteous among the Nations". The Righteous were defined as non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust.

Since 1963, a commission headed by a justice of the Supreme Court of Israel
Israel
has been charged with the duty of awarding the honorary title "Righteous among the Nations". Guided in its work by certain criteria, the commission meticulously studies all documentation including evidence by survivors and other eyewitnesses, evaluates the historical circumstances and the element of risk to the rescuer, and then decides if the case meets the criteria. Those criteria are:

* Only a Jewish party can put a nomination forward; * Helping a family member or Jew convert to Christianity is not a criterion for recognition; * Assistance has to be repeated and/or substantial; and * Assistance has to be given without any financial gain expected in return (although covering normal expenses such as rent or food is acceptable).

The award has been given without regard to the social rank of the helper. For example, it has been given to royalty such as Princess Alice of Battenberg , Queen Mother Helen of Romania
Romania
and Queen Elisabeth of Belgium
Belgium
but also to others like the philosopher Jacques Ellul . In 2014. Henk Zanoli returned his medal after six of his family members were killed in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge
Operation Protective Edge
. The Righteous Medal of Marta Bocheńska

A person who is recognized as Righteous for having taken risks to help Jews during the Holocaust
Holocaust
is awarded a medal in their name, a certificate of honor, and the privilege of having the name added to those on the Wall of Honor in the Garden of the Righteous at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem
Jerusalem
(the last is in lieu of a tree planting, which was discontinued for lack of space). The awards are distributed to the rescuers or their next-of-kin during ceremonies in Israel, or in their countries of residence through the offices of Israel's diplomatic representatives. These ceremonies are attended by local government representatives and are given wide media coverage.

The Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem
Law authorizes Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem
"to confer honorary citizenship upon the Righteous Among the Nations, and if they have died, the commemorative citizenship of the State of Israel, in recognition of their actions". Anyone who has been recognized as "Righteous" is entitled to apply to Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem
for the certificate. If the person is no longer alive, their next of kin is entitled to request that commemorative citizenship be conferred on the Righteous who has died. The Righteous Diploma for Maria Kotarba
Maria Kotarba

In total, 26,513 (as of 1 January 2017 ) men and women from 51 countries have been recognized, amounting to more than 10,000 authenticated rescue stories. Yad Vashem's policy is to pursue the program for as long as petitions for this title are received and are supported by evidence that meets the criteria.

Recipients who choose to live in the state of Israel
Israel
are entitled to a pension equal to the average national wage and free health care, as well as assistance with housing and nursing care.

RIGHTEOUS SETTLED IN ISRAEL

At least 130 Righteous Gentiles have settled in Israel
Israel
. They were welcomed by Israeli authorities, and were granted citizenship. In the mid-1980s, they became entitled to special pensions. Some of them settled in British Mandatory Palestine
Mandatory Palestine
before Israel's establishment shortly after World War II
World War II
, or in the early years of the new state of Israel, while others came later. Those who came earlier often spoke fluent Hebrew
Hebrew
and have now integrated into Israeli society.

OTHER SIGNS OF VENERATION

A Righteous Among the Nations
Righteous Among the Nations
award ceremony in the Polish Senate (2012)

The Righteous are honored with a feast day on the liturgical calendar of the Episcopal Church in the US on 16 July. A Righteous from Italy, Edward Focherini , was beatified by the Catholic Church on 15 June 2013.

In 2015, Lithuania's first street sign honoring a Righteous Among the Nations was unveiled in Vilnius
Vilnius
. The street is named Simaites Street, after Ona Šimaitė ; she was a Vilnius
Vilnius
University librarian who helped and rescued Jewish people in the Vilna Ghetto .

NUMBER OF AWARDS BY COUNTRY

As of June 16, 2017 , the award has been made to 26,513 people.

RANK COUNTRY NUMBER OF AWARDS

1 Poland
Poland
6,706

2 Netherlands
Netherlands
5,595

3 France
France
3,995

4 Ukraine
Ukraine
2,573

5 Belgium
Belgium
1,731

6 Lithuania
Lithuania
891

7 Hungary
Hungary
844

8 Italy
Italy
682

9 Belarus
Belarus
641

10 Germany
Germany
601

11 Slovakia
Slovakia
572

12 Greece
Greece
335

13 Russia
Russia
204

14 Latvia
Latvia
136

15 Serbia
Serbia
135

16 Czech Republic
Czech Republic
116

17 Croatia
Croatia
115

18 Austria
Austria
109

19 Moldova
Moldova
79

20 Albania
Albania
75

21 Norway
Norway
67

22 Romania
Romania
60

23 Switzerland
Switzerland
49

24 Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
43

25 Armenia
Armenia
24

26

Denmark
Denmark
United Kingdom
United Kingdom

22

28 Bulgaria
Bulgaria
20

29

Macedonia Sweden
Sweden

10

31 Slovenia
Slovenia
10

32 Spain
Spain
9

33 United States
United States
5

34

Estonia
Estonia
Turkey
Turkey
Portugal
Portugal

3

36

Brazil
Brazil
Chile
Chile
Indonesia
Indonesia

Ireland Republic of China

2

38

Cuba
Cuba
Ecuador
Ecuador
Egypt
Egypt

El Salvador
El Salvador
Georgia Japan
Japan

Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Montenegro
Montenegro
Vietnam
Vietnam

1

SEE ALSO

* Israel
Israel
portal * History portal * Judaism portal * Saints portal

* List of people who helped Jews during the Holocaust
Holocaust
* List of Righteous Among the Nations by country * Virtuous pagan * Żegota

REFERENCES

* ^ Gunnar S. Paulsson, “The Rescue of Jews by Non-Jews in Nazi-Occupied Poland”, The Journal of Holocaust
Holocaust
Education, volume 7, nos. 1 Barnard, Anne (2014-08-15). "Resisting Nazis, He Saw Need for Israel. Now He Is Its Critic.". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved 2017-07-06. * ^ A B C "About the Righteous: Statistics". The Righteous Among The Nations. Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem
The Holocaust
The Holocaust
Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority. 2017-01-01. Retrieved 2017-03-11. * ^ "First Arab Nominated for Holocaust
Holocaust
Honor". Associated Press. 30 January 2007. Retrieved 1 February 2007. * ^ "Story in \'\'The Forward\'\' re Righteous Gentiles who settled in Israel". Forward.com. Retrieved 2013-09-06. * ^ "Odoardo Focherini: Late journalist, hero and Blessed of the Catholic Church". Rome Reports. Retrieved 19 June 2013. * ^ A B "Lithuania’s first street honoring Holocaust
Holocaust
Righteous unveiled in Vilnius
Vilnius
Jewish Telegraphic Agency". Jta.org. September 25, 2015. Retrieved 2015-09-26.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

* The Heart Has Reasons: Holocaust
Holocaust
Rescuers and Their Stories of Courage, Mark Klempner , ISBN 0-8298-1699-2 , The Pilgrim Press. * Righteous Gentiles of the Holocaust: Genocide and Moral Obligation, David P. Gushee , ISBN 1-55778-821-9 , Paragon House Publishers. * The Lexicon of the Righteous Among the Nations, Yad Vashem, Jerusalem. (volumes: Poland, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Europe I, Europe II). * To Save a Life: Stories of Holocaust
Holocaust
Rescue, Land-Weber, Ellen, ISBN 0-252-02515-6 , University of Illinois Press . * The Seven Laws of Noah, Lichtenstein, Aaron , New York: The Rabbi Jacob Joseph School Press, 1981, ASIN B00071QH6S. * The Image of the Non-Jew in Judaism, Novak, David , ISBN 0-88946-975-X , New York and Toronto: Edwin Mellen Press , 1983. * The Path of the Righteous: Gentile Rescuers of Jews During the Holocaust, Paldiel, Mordecai, ISBN 0-88125-376-6 , KTAV Publishing House, Inc. * Among the Righteous: Lost Stories from the Holocaust's Long Reach into Arab Lands, Robert Satloff , Washington Institute for Near East Policy , (PublicAffairs, 2006) ISBN 1-58648-399-4 . * When Light Pierced the Darkness: Christian Rescue of Jews in Nazi-Occupied Poland, Tec, Nechama , ISBN 0-19-505194-7 , Oxford University Press . * Zegota : The Council to Aid Jews in Occupied Poland
Poland
1942-1945, Tomaszewski, Irene & Werbowski, Tecia, ISBN 1-896881-15-7 , Price-Patterson. * Tolerance in Judaism: The Medieval and Modern Sources, Zuesse, Evan M., In: The Encyclopaedia of Judaism, edited by Jacob Neusner , A. Avery-Peck, and W.S. Green, Second Edition, ISBN 90-04-14787-X , Leiden: Brill Publishers
Brill Publishers
, 2005, Vol. IV: 2688-2713. * When Courage Was Stronger Than Fear: Remarkable Stories of Christians Who Saved Jews from the Holocaust
Holocaust
by Peter Hellman. 2nd edition, ISBN 1-56924-663-7 , Marlowe ">(Website portal for the multimedia-based project and its research documentation and presentations). sprawiedliwi.org.pl (in English with a link to the Polish version). Warsaw, Poland
Poland
: POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews . 2016. CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link ) * Heroes and Heroines of the Holocaust
Holocaust
at the Holocaust
Holocaust
Survivors' Network

* Klempner, Mark (2017). "Heart Has Reasons: Holocaust
Holocaust
Rescuers and Their Stories of Courage" (Website portal of resources for the book and lectures of the same name, with PDF and audio excerpts). hearthasreasons.com. The site includes extensive lists of articles, books and film/video/DVDs about Holocaust
Holocaust
rescuers and related heroes, plus a reading group guide and book excerpts such as:

* Rut Matthijsen: Chemistry of Compassion — the story of a Dutch biochemist and Righteous Gentile

* Saving Jews: Polish Righteous — Those Who Risked Their Lives, compiled and edited by Anna Poray * Photo gallery on righteous gentiles during the Holocaust
Holocaust
at the Simon Wiesenthal Center
Simon Wiesenthal Center
* Rescuers at the Jewish Virtual Library * Karoly Szabo - Wallenberg, 1947, 1965: Holocaust
Holocaust
Memorial Budapest, testimony from the Jakobovics family * The Jewish Foundation for the Righteous at JFR.org * Auschwitz: Inside the Nazi State at the American public television broadcaster PBS
PBS
* zyciezazycie.pl, a site commemorating Poles who gave their lives to save Jews * Gardens of the Righteous Worldwide Committee * Essay: "Paying the ultimate price" by Irena Steinfeldt, The Jerusalem
Jerusalem
Post , 14 April 2009. * "AJPN - anonymes, Justes et persécutés durant la période nazie dans les communes de France
France
(The Anonymous, Just and Percecuted during the Nazi period in the communes of France)". www.ajpn.org (in French). Bordeaux, France
France
: AJPN. 2008–2016. CS1 maint: Date format (link )

* v * t * e

Righteous Among the Nations
Righteous Among the Nations

List of individuals and groups assisting Jews

OVERVIEW

* The Holocaust
The Holocaust
* The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in Poland
Poland
* Holocaust
Holocaust
victims * Righteousness * Seven Laws of Noah
Seven Laws of Noah
* Yad Vashem
Yad Vashem

FAMOUS INDIVIDUALS

* Irena Adamowicz * Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens * Feng-Sha