Father Patrick Desbois, president of the Yahad–In Unum Association, has devoted his life to confronting antisemitism and furthering Catholic-Jewish understanding. Since 2001, he has led a truly historic undertaking.
Working closely with Museum staff and using the Museum’s archives to aid his search, he and his team have crisscrossed the countryside in Ukraine in an effort to locate every mass grave and site at which Jews were killed during the Holocaust. To date, they have identified 800 of an estimated 2,000 such locations. They are also collecting artifacts and, most significantly, recording video testimonies from eyewitnesses—many of whom are speaking publicly for the first time. These invaluable testimonies will become part of the Museum’s permanent collection.
Father Desbois’ extraordinary work to preserve the memory of Ukraine’s former Jewish community and to advance understanding of the crimes committed there during the Holocaust has received international media attention, including coverage in Le Monde, The New York Times, TIME Magazine, and NBC Nightly News.
His new book, The Holocaust by Bullets: A Priest’s Journey to Uncover the Truth behind the Murder of 1.5 Million Jews, was published with the Museum’s support.
Learn more about the Einsatzgruppen, the large mobile killing units that swept across Ukraine
Read about Fr. Desbois in The New York Times
Read about Father Desbois in The [Boston] Pilot