Jesus Christ the Conqueror of Death

In 2001, my sons John and Seth and I visited Europe and while there went to Dachau. There is a small Russian Orthodox Chapel near the crematorium. John took this photo of the chapel which had a unique icon on the wall (high place) behind the altar. It shows Christ the Liberator leading the imprisoned victims of the concentration camp out of their hell, just like He is often portrayed in Resurrection Icons where He is harrowing hell. Christ destroys death in His Kingdom where death and darkness are no more. The gates of hell cannot prevail against Christ.

Dachau was liberated a few days after Orthodox Pascha and the surviving Orthodox celebrated a liturgy which gave a most profound meaning to the words of the hymn, “for from death to life and from earth to heaven has Christ our God led us.”   The freed prisoners made makeshift vestments from prison garments.  It is said that they sang the Paschal hymns from memory.   It is amazing that they could remember anything at all from the days before they were thrown into hell.