Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was born February 4, 1906 in the town of Breslau (German name) located in the south-west portion of Poland. Historically, the town had been rule and inhabited by the governments of Poland, Bohemia, Austria, Prussia, and Germany. After World War II, the city returned as a possession of Poland. In 2006, Breslau recorded a population of six hundred and thirty thousand making it the fourth largest city in Poland. Bonhoeffer was born a twin to his sister Sabine. They were two of total eight children, three brothers including Karl Jr. (1899-1857) who worked as a German chemist before World War II, Walter (1899-1918) killed, as a solider in War I, and Klaus (1901-1945) a lawyer who served as a hospital orderly in World War I. Four sisters Ursula (1902-1983), Sabine (1906-1999) and Christel (1903-1965). Sister Susanne (1900-1991) married the theologian and botanist Walter Dress. Father Karl Sr. was a prominent German psychiatrist. Paula, a stay at home mother, homed schooled her children. It was thought that Dietrich would follow his father’s footsteps and become a psychiatrist. Instead, he decided on a career of theology and the pastorate. A brilliant student, Bonhoeffer obtains a doctorate of theology at age twenty-one. Because Bonhoeffer was not of age for ordination, which was age 25, around 1927, he traveled to New York City where he attended Union Theological Seminary and developed a relationship with the African-American Abyssinia Baptist Church. These experiences he brought back to Germany helping him to shape his views and understanding of the importance of Christian community. Originally, a Lutheran, Bonhoeffer was not comfortable with its liberal theology. He felt it devolved of Scriptural structure. In 1933, He began a dialog with the fame theologian Karl Barth who was impressed with his thirst for biblical knowledge. Thought the influence of Barth and others, Bonhoeffer embark on theological view...
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