By Matthew D. Hockenos

ISBN-10: 0253110319

ISBN-13: 9780253110312

ISBN-10: 0253344484

ISBN-13: 9780253344489

This e-book heavily examines the turmoil within the German Protestant church buildings within the fast postwar years as they tried to return to phrases with the hot prior. Reeling from the effect of conflict, the church buildings addressed the results of cooperation with the regime and the therapy of Jews. In Germany, the Protestant Church consisted of 28 independent neighborhood church buildings. through the Nazi years, those church buildings shaped into a variety of alliances. One workforce, the German Christian Church, overtly aligned itself with the Nazis. the remainder have been carefully against the regime or attempted to stay noncommittal. the interior debates, even though, concerned each staff and founded on problems with trust that have been vital to all. vital theologians resembling Karl Barth have been instrumental in urgent those matters ahead. whereas now not an exhaustive examine of Protestantism in the course of the Nazi years, A Church Divided breaks new flooring within the dialogue of accountability, guilt, and the Nazi previous.

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Additional info for A Church Divided: German Protestants Confront the Nazi Past

Example text

For the supporters of Barmen, the traditional interpretation of the Lutheran confessions provided inadequate doctrinal resources to withstand attempts by the German Christians to fuse Christianity and National Socialism. In view of the German Christian heresies, Barth and his followers sought not simply to restore the traditional Lutheran vision but to revise that vision by restricting the church’s proclamation to God’s word alone. They defined the church as the brethren gathered together to profess Jesus Christ as the sole mediator between God and man.

7 In Bavaria, Bishop Meiser had pastors read a statement from the pulpit on Easter Sunday 1933 lauding the new state: A state which brings into being again government according to God’s Laws should, in doing so, be assured not only of the applause but also of the glad and active cooperation of the Church. 10 Thus, alongside far less reputable churchmen in the ultranationalist and fanatically antisemitic German Christian movement— for example, pastor Joachim Hossenfelder (1899–1976), a thirty-three-year-old firebrand and ardent Nazi, and Ludwig Müller (1883–1945), a former naval chaplain who would become Reich bishop in fall 1933—respectable and influential authorities in the church also applauded the National Socialist government.

The Dahlem synod brought into the open the divisions that had simmered below the surface at Barmen. The Dahlemites, on the one hand, argued that the Dahlem resolutions were the logical outcome of the theological declaration made at Barmen. Barmen, they argued, laid out the Confessing Church’s theology, and Dahlem its praxis. The authors of the Barmen declaration asserted that the gospel of Jesus Christ was the one word that the church must hear and obey. The Dahlemites put this into practice by contending that the basis of the Reich church was something other than the gospel and that therefore it was their duty as true Christians to sever ties with the leadership of the Reich church and to erect new laws and bodies that corresponded with the gospel.

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