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Among the most powerful and enigmatic figures of the past century was German pastor, theologian and author Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He was born in Breslau, Germany, in 1906. In the late 1930s, he became one of Germany's most prominent resistance activists. Arrested in 1943, he was moved from prison to prison for two years before being hanged at the Flossenburg concentration camp less than a month before Germany surrendered. His anti-Nazi theological and political resistance, together with his condemnation of anti-Semitism, cost him his life, and moved his contemporaries to call him a modern Christian martyr.
His work and life were celebrated at a remarkable symposium held at Boston University recently. Entitled "Faith and Resistance: The Struggle of a German Theologian Against the Nazi Terror," the symposium featured two major panels. The first panel discussed Bonhoeffer's historical and political relevance. The second panel focused on the theological and educational Bonhoeffer.
This week's show featured excerpts from the second panel which explored the importance of Bonhoeffer's writings for modern theology. The panel speakers included Clifford Green, executive director of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works, Wayne Witson Floyd, director of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Center at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA., Victoria Barnett, author of the 1992 book "For the Soul of the People: Protestant Protest Against Hitler;" Horace T. Allen, Jr., Professor of Worship at Boston University's School of Theology, Father Robert Daly, Professor of Theology at Boston College, and the Dean of Boston University's School of Theology Robert Neville.
This program aired on May 6, 2001.
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