The youth ministry focus of Dietrich Bonhoeffer's life is often forgotten or overlooked, even though he did much work with young people and wrote a number of papers, sermons, and addresses about or for the youth of the church. However, youth ministry expert Andrew Root explains that this focus is central to Bonhoeffer's story and thought. Root presents Bonhoeffer as the forefather and model of the growing theological turn in youth ministry. By linking contemporary youth workers with this epic theologian, the author shows the depth of youth ministry work and underscores its importance in the church. He also shows how Bonhoeffer's life and thought impact present-day youth ministry practice.
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During the twelve years of Hitler’s Third Reich, very few Germans took the risk of actively opposing his tyranny and terror, and fewer still did so to protect the sanctity of law and faith. In No Ordinary Men, Elisabeth Sifton and Fritz Stern focus on two remarkable, courageous men who did—the pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer and his close friend and brother-in-law Hans von Dohnanyi—and offer new insights into the fearsome difficulties that resistance entailed. (Not forgotten is Christine Bonhoeffer Dohnanyi, Hans’s wife and Dietrich’s sister, who was indispensable to them both.) From the start Bonhoeffer opposed the Nazi efforts to bend Germany’s Protestant churches to Hitler’s will, while Dohnanyi, a lawyer in the Justice Ministry and then in the Wehrmacht’s counterintelligence section, helped victims, kept records of Nazi crimes to be used as evidence once the regime fell, and was an important figure in the various conspiracies to assassinate Hitler. The strength of their shared commitment to these undertakings—and to the people they were helping—endured even after their arrest in April 1943 and until, after great suffering, they were executed on Hitler’s express orders in April 1945, just weeks before the Third Reich collapsed. Bonhoeffer’s posthumously published Letters and Papers from Prison and other writings found a wide international audience, but Dohnanyi’s work is scarcely known, though it was crucial to the resistance and he was the one who drew Bonhoeffer into the anti-Hitler plots. Sifton and Stern offer dramatic new details and interpretations in their account of the extraordinary efforts in which the two jointly engaged. No Ordinary Men honors both Bonhoeffer’s human decency and his theological legacy, as well as Dohnanyi’s preservation of the highest standard of civic virtue in an utterly corrupted state.
A new comprehensive biography of this hugely important Christian martyr, 60 years after his execution at the hands of the Nazis Bonhoeffer has gained a position as one of the most prominent Christian martyrs of the last century. His influence is so widespread that even 60 years after his execution by the Nazis, Bonhoeffer's life and work are still the subject of fresh and lively discussion. As a pastor and theologian, Bonhoeffer decided to resist the Nazis in Germany, but his resistance was not solely theological. He played a key leadership role in the Confessing Church, a major source of Christian opposition to Hitler and his anti-Semitism and was principal of the secret seminary at Finkenwalde in Pomerania. It was here that he developed his theological visions of radical discipleship and communal life. In 1938, he joined the Wehrmacht's "Abwehr", the German Military Intelligence Office, in order to seek international support for the plot against Hitler. Following his inner calling and conscience meant that Bonhoeffer was continually forced to make decisions that separated him from his family, friends, and colleagues, and which ultimately led to his martyrdom in Flossenbürg concentration camp, less than a month before the Second World War came to an end. His letters and papers from prison movingly express the development of some of the most provocative and fascinating ideas of 20th century theology. Sixty years after Bonhoeffer's death and forty years after the publication of Eberhard Bethge's ground breaking biography, Ferdinand Schlingensiepen offers a definitive new book on Bonhoeffer, for a new generation of readers. Schlingensiepen takes into account documents that have only been made accessible during the last few years - such as the letters between Bonhoeffer and his fiancée Maria von Wedemeyer. Schlingensiepen's careful narrative brings to life the historical events, as well as displaying the theological development of one of the most creative thinkers of
Preaching, according to Bonhoeffer, is like offering an apple to child. The gospel is proclaimed, but for it to be received as gift depends on whether or not the hearer is in a position to do so. Offered here are thirty-one of Pastor Bonhoeffer's sermons, in new English translations, which he preached at various times of the year and in a variety of different settings. Each is introduced by Bonhoeffer translator Isabel Best who also provides a brief biography of Bonhoeffer. The foreword is by Victoria J. Barnett, general editor of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, English edition, published by Fortress Press, from which these sermons are selected. In his preaching, Bonhoeffer's strong, personal faith--the foundation for everything he did--shines in the darkness of Hitler's Third Reich and in the church struggle against it. Though not overtly political, Bonhoeffer's deep concern for the developments in his world is revealed in his sermons as he seeks to draw the listener into conversation with the promises and claims of the gospel--a conversation readers today are invited to join.
One of the best known Christians of the twentieth century, Dietrich Bonhoeffer is admired as a theologian for his unparalleled independence of mind, creativity and brilliance by liberals and conservatives alike. His death at the hands of the Nazis is an extraordinary tale of courage and Christian discipleship. However, Bonhoeffer was also a serious theologian who, while indebted to the liberal tradition of the University of Berlin, was also influenced by the new thinking of Karl Barth that challenged the consensus. Plant has written a critical exploration of Bonhoeffer's writings that illuminates his ethical theology, showing that what linked all his work was the attempt to listen to God's word in, to, and for the secular world.
Joel Lawrence offers a new methodology and a fresh perspective in this book, making it a concise guide to one of the most remarkable martyrs and theologians of the 20th century.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945) remains the most seminal theologian of those whose work was forged and tested in the worst years of the twentieth century. A German who loved his country and culture, and who mourned its crimes and actively resisted them, his ethic was wholly contextual, attuned to what he must do in his own land as a disciple of Jesus Christ. He might have been surprised to find that a half-century and more later his work has been widely appropriated by others in different circumstances for their exercise of Christian responsibility. This volume of essays is one example of Bonhoeffer's ongoing relevance. Rasmussen engages Luther, Barth, Niebuhr, Hauerwas, Yoder, and Berrigan as a way to illuminate aspects of Bonhoeffer's ethics. He also compares the post-holocaust theology of Rabbi Greenberg with Bonhoeffer's own treatment of divine presence and human responsibility in a world that has "come of age." One essay, "The Meaning of the Theology of the Cross for Social Ethics in the World Today," pulls the main themes of the book together. This 2016 edition also includes a new chapter, which relates Bonhoeffer's ethics to the current environmental crisis.
The authors of this volume discuss specific philosophical and theological ideas in view of Bonhoeffer’s intellectual formation. As such, all the studies converge on the thought of Bonhoeffer as a whole in order to illuminate the growth and maturation of his theology. Contributors to this volume include: Barry Harvey, Wayne Floyd, Peter Frick, Geffrey Kelly, Wolf Krötke, Andreas Pangritz, Stephen Plant, Martin Rumscheidt, Christine Tietz, Ralf Wüstenberg, and Josiah Young.
Six lessons on basic doctrines and Christian living based on the life of Bonhoeffer, and on a variety of passages from Scripture.
Nazi Germany produced an unusual group of Christian martyrs--among them, the nun philosopher Edith Stein, the mystical philosopher Simone Weil, and the peasant conscientious objector Hans JSgerstatter--but perhaps none so complex as the Lutheran theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Born into a large upper-middle-class, professional family that was not particularly devout or observant (his father was one of the leading psychiatrists in Germany), Dietrich early in life decided he wanted to be a Christian theologian. Yet his family background and connections insured that he wouldn't be one in the narrow mold of so many of his colleagues. Opportunities for travel-to Spain, North Africa. Mexico, Cuba, America (twice), and England (often)-gave him a broad horizon of possibilities. The greatest thing about America for him was his experiences in Harlem and his friendships with African Americans. His great regret was that he missed an opportunity to travel to India to meet Gandhi. He was one of the few German churchmen who spoke forthrightly against the persecution of Jews as Jews and not merely of Christians of Jewish descent. (How much of this was due to his beloved, 90-year-old grandmother Sophie, who defied the Nazi ban on shopping in Jewish stores? "I buy the things I need where I like.") His family connections drew him into a dangerous double game. His "employment" as a member of the Counterintelligence Office of the High Command of the Armed Forces enabled him to continue work as a pastor and seminary director. It allowed him to travel abroad, where he worked for a negotiated peace. And it eventually drew him into the plot to kill Hitler-an ethical stand which many German Christians of his generation couldn't understand or forgive. He was executed on 9 April 1945, three weeks before Hitler committed suicide. He was thirty-nine years old.The life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer has been told at great length and in magnificent detail by his younger colleague, Eberhard Bethge. It's a
"Stephen Haynes, whose volume The Bonhoeffer Phenomenon probed the many conflicting ways in which Bonhoeffer has been understood by Christians for their own uses, now brings new clarity to the vexed and controversial question of Bonhoeffer's relationship to Jews and the Jewish people. Haynes's text analyzes the historical record and Bonhoeffer's maturing theology and offers an analysis of Bonhoeffer himself, his work, and his legacy for a generation learning from the Holocaust."--BOOK JACKET.
This Companion serves as a guide for readers wanting to explore the thought and legacy of the great German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906–45). The book shows why Bonhoeffer remains such an attractive figure to so many people of diverse backgrounds. Its chapters, written by authors from differing national, theological and church contexts, provide a helpful introduction to, and commentary on, Bonhoeffer's life, work and writing and so guide the reader along the complex paths of his thought. Experts set out comprehensively Bonhoeffer's political, social and cultural contexts, and offer biographical information which is indispensable for the understanding of his theology. Major themes arising from the theology, and different interpretations to it, lead the reader into a dialogue with this most influential of thinkers who remains both fascinating and challenging. There is a chronology, a glossary and an index.
Jens Zimmermann locates Bonhoeffer within the Christian humanist tradition extending back to patristic theology. He begins by explaining Bonhoeffer's own use of the term humanism (and Christian humanism), and considering how his criticism of liberal Protestant theology prevents him from articulating his own theology rhetorically as a Christian humanism. He then provides an in-depth portrayal of Bonhoeffer's theological anthropology and establishes that Bonhoeffer's Christology and attendant anthropology closely resemble patristic teaching. The volume also considers Bonhoeffer's mature anthropology, focusing in particular on the Christian self. It introduces the hermeneutic quality of Bonhoeffer's theology as a further important feature of his Christian humanism. In contrast to secular and religious fundamentalisms, Bonhoeffer offers a hermeneutic understanding of truth as participation in the Christ event that makes interpretation central to human knowing. Having established the hermeneutical structure of his theology, and his personalist configuration of reality, Zimmermann outlines Bonhoeffer's ethics as 'Christformation'. Building on the hermeneutic theology and participatory ethics of the previous chapters, he then shows how a major part of Bonhoeffer's life and theology, namely his dedication to the Bible as God's word, is also consistent with his Christian humanism.
- Author : Martin E Marty
- Publisher : Princeton University Press
- Release Date : 2011-02-07
- Genre : Religion
- Pages : 296
- ISBN : 9781400838035
For fascination, influence, inspiration, and controversy, Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Letters and Papers from Prison is unmatched by any other book of Christian reflection written in the twentieth century. A Lutheran pastor and theologian, Bonhoeffer spent two years in Nazi prisons before being executed at age thirty-nine, just a month before the German surrender, for his role in the plot to kill Hitler. The posthumous Letters and Papers from Prison has had a tremendous impact on both Christian and secular thought since it was first published in 1951, and has helped establish Bonhoeffer's reputation as one of the most important Protestant thinkers of the twentieth century. In this, the first history of the book's remarkable global career, National Book Award-winning author Martin Marty tells how and why Letters and Papers from Prison has been read and used in such dramatically different ways, from the cold war to today. In his late letters, Bonhoeffer raised tantalizing questions about the role of Christianity and the church in an increasingly secular world. Marty tells the story of how, in the 1960s and the following decades, these provocative ideas stirred a wide range of thinkers and activists, including civil rights and antiapartheid campaigners, "death-of-God" theologians, and East German Marxists. In the process of tracing the eventful and contested history of Bonhoeffer's book, Marty provides a compelling new perspective on religious and secular life in the postwar era.
WHO BETTER TO FACE THE GREATEST EVIL OF THE 20TH CENTURY THAN A HUMBLE MAN OF FAITH? As Adolf Hitler and the Nazis seduced a nation, bullied a continent, and attempted to exterminate the Jews of Europe, a small number of dissidents and saboteurs worked to dismantle the Third Reich from the inside. One of these was Dietrich Bonhoeffer—a pastor and author. In this New York Times best-selling biography, Eric Metaxas takes both strands of Bonhoeffer’s life—the theologian and the spy—and draws them together to tell a searing story of incredible moral courage in the face of monstrous evil. Metaxas presents the fullest accounting of Bonhoeffer’s heart-wrenching decision to leave the safe haven of America to return to Hitler’s Germany, and sheds new light on Bonhoeffer’s involvement in the famous Valkyrie plot and in “Operation 7,” the effort to smuggle Jews into neutral Switzerland. In a deeply moving narrative, Metaxas uses previously unavailable documents?including personal letters, detailed journal entries, and firsthand personal accounts?to reveal dimensions of Bonhoeffer's life and theology never before seen. "Bonhoeffer is the story of a life framed by a passion for truth and a commitment to justice on behalf of those who face implacable evil. Includes Readers’ Guide “[A] beautifully constructed biography.” —Alan Wolfe, The New Republic “Metaxas tells Bonhoeffer’s story with passion and theological sophistication. . . .” —Wall Street Journal “[A] weighty, riveting analysis of the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. . . .” —Publishers Weekly “Metaxas presents Bonhoeffer as a clear-headed, deeply convicted Christian who submitted to no one and nothing except God and his Word.” —Christianity Today “Metaxas has written a book that adds a new dimension to World War II, a new understanding of how evil can seize the soul of a nation and a man of faith can confront it. . . .” —Thomas Fleming, author, The New Dealers’ War “Meta
Theologian. Conspirator. Martyr. Saint. Dietrich Bonhoeffer was killed in the waning days of World War II, having been implicated in the July 20th assassination attempt on Hitler. Since his death, Bonhoeffer’s life and writings have inspired contradictory responses. He is often seen as a model for Christian pacifist resistance, and more recently for violent direct political action. Bonhoeffer’s name has been invoked by violent anti-abortion protestors as well as political leaders calling for support on a ‘war on terror’ in the aftermath of 9/11. Petra Brown critically analyses Bonhoeffer’s writing preceding and during his conspiracy involvement, particularly his recurring concept of the ‘extraordinary.’ Brown examines this idea in light of ‘the state of exception,’ a concept coined by the one-time Nazi jurist and political theorist, Carl Schmitt. She also draws on the existentialist philosopher Sören Kierkegaard to consider what happens when discipleship is understood as obedience to a divine command. This book aims to complicate an unreflective admiration of Bonhoeffer’s decision for conspiracy, and draws attention to the potentially dangerous implications of his emerging political theology.
This book is an interpretation of Bonhoeffer in the contemporary context. Jeffrey Pugh puts Bonhoeffer's theology in perspective by revisiting some of the themes of his life that have found abiding significance in Christian theology. Starting with a chapter on why Bonhoeffer is still important for us today, this book moves to chapters that bring Bonhoeffer into conversation with our present situation. In each of these chapters Pugh takes one of the central ideas of Bonhoeffer and gives them a fresh perspective. Many of Bonhoeffer books today are written from an exegetical perspective, they try and get at exactly what Bonhoeffer meant. Others are written from a hermeneutical perspective, they try and interpret Bonhoeffer's abiding significance. This book seeks to combine both these approaches to offer interpretations of Bonhoeffer that are germane to our situation today.
In the final days of World War II, early one frosty morning, a young German pastor was taken from his cell by his Nazi captors and led to his place of execution. Coming from one of Berlin's leading families, Dietrich Bonhoeffer's already brilliant academic and church career was thus brutally terminated. Bonhoeffer found himself in such a strange place for a theologian, being one of the very few in the German Church who stood resolutely opposed to the Nazis to the point where he, as a one-time pacifist, became deeply involved in the conspiratorial plot to kill Hitler and bring down the regime. This course of action saw him enter the murky sphere of secrecy and duplicity as a member of the conspiracy, while two-timing the Nazis as a member of military intelligence. Using that official role, Bonhoeffer was able to travel and communicate with his international ecumenical contacts as part of the conspiracy's attempt to strike a deal with the Allies to end the war. From a dark period, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, brave and resolute, stands as a bright and shining light.