Blessed is the Match: The Life & Death of Hannah Senesh


A beautiful documentary opened earlier this month in LA and NY and will soon be on DVD: Blessed is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh. It is narrated by actress Joan Allen.

It is the story of a vibrant young Hungarian Jewess, Hannah Senesh (1921-1924), who was born into privilege in Hungary and migrated to Palestine in 1939 to study agriculture. She later joined the British army in order to parachute into Hungary and join the partisans to support the Jewish resistance. It was the only military operation undertaken during World War II to help the Jews.

Unfortunately, the timing was terrible. Hannah and her companions landed just as the Nazi’s occupied Hungary. They were captured; Hannah was killed.

But Hannah was many things, above all a poet.

This documetary is named for the last poem, or song, that she wrote after she parachuted into the partisan camp before capture. It reminds us that we can all make a difference:

Blessed is the match consumed in kindling flame.
Blessed is the flame that burns in the secret fastness of the heart.
Blessed is the heart with strength to stop its beating for honor’s sake.
Blessed is the match consumed in kindling flame.

Fascinating story.

Life of Hannah Senesh  wikipedia

Blessed is the Match documentary website