Bonhoeffer, Dietrich.

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Bonhoeffer, Dietrich, born on 04-02-1906, in Breslau, In addition to his other siblings, Dietrich had a twin sister, Sabine Bonhoeffer Leibholz: Dietrich and Sabine were the sixth and seventh children out of eight. His father was Karl Bonhoeffer, a psychiatrist and neurologist, noted for his criticism of Sigmund Freud; and his mother Paula Bonhoeffer was a teacher and the granddaughter of Protestant theologian Karl von Hase and painter Stanislaus von Kalckreuth.   Bonhoeffer’s family dynamic and his parents’ values enabled him to receive a high level of education and encouraged his curiosity, which impacted his ability to lead others around him, specifically in the church setting. Dietrich also learned how to play the piano at age 8, and composed the songs performed at the Philharmonic at age 11. Walter Bonhoeffer, the second born of the Bonhoeffer family, was killed in action during World War I when Bonhoeffer was 12 years old. Walter was called to the western front in World War I. Walter left home in April 1918 and only two weeks later he died of a shrapnel wound in Francourt France. Walter was injured by an exploding shell on April 23, and died on 28-04-1918, age 18.
At age 14, Dietrich Bonhoeffer decided to pursue his education in theology despite the criticism of his older brothers Klaus, a lawyer, and Karl, a scientist. Klaus Hans Martin Bonhoeffer (05-01-1901 in Breslau ; † 23-04-1945 in Berlin ) was a German lawyer and involved in the assassination attempt on Hitler on 20-07-1944 .
Dietrich took Hebrew as an elective in school and attended many evangelical meetings, moved by the toils of war and hungered children. Bonhoeffer began his studies at Tübingen and eventually moved to the University of Berlin, where he submitted his successful dissertation: Sanctorum Communio.] At the age of 21, on 17-12-1927, Dietrich went on to complete his Doctor of Theology degree from Humboldt University of Berlin, graduating summa cum laude.
His family were not religious but had a strong musical and artistic heritage. From an early age, Bonhoeffer displayed great musical talent, and the pursuit of music was important throughout his life. His family were quite taken aback when, at the age of 14, he announced he wanted to train and become a Lutheran pastor, theologian and martyr.
In 1927, he graduated from the Humpold University of Berlin. He gained a doctorate in theology for his influential thesis, Sanctorum Communio (Communion of Saints.) After graduating, he spent time in Spain and America; these gave him a wider outlook on life and helped him move from academic study to a more practical interpretation of the Gospels. He was moved by the concept of the Church’s involvement in social justice and protection of those who were oppressed. His wide travels also encouraged a greater interest in ecumenism
In 1931, he returned to Berlin and was ordained as a priest, aged 25. The early 1930s were a period of great upheaval in Germany, with the instability of Weimar Germany and the mass unemployment of the Great Depression leading to the election of Adolf Hitler in 1933.
While the election of Hitler was widely welcomed by the German population, including significant parts of the Church, Bonhoeffer was a firm opponent of Hitler’s philosophy. Two days after Hitler’s election as Chancellor in Jan 1933, Bonhoeffer made a radio broadcast criticizing Adolf Hitler  and in particular the danger of an idolatrous cult of the Fuhrer. His radio broadcast was cut off mid-air.
Dietrich, with his brother became a participant in the German resistance movement against Nazism and a founding member of the Confessing Church.  Bonhoeffer was further harassed by the Nazi authorities as he was forbidden to speak in public and was required to regularly report his activities to the police in 1940. In 1941, he was forbidden to print or to publish. In the meantime, Bonhoeffer, an avowed pacifist and pastor, joined the Abwehr , a German military intelligence organization, which was also the center of the anti-Adolf Hitler (did you know) resistance. Bonhoeffer advocated Hitler’s assassination and knew about various 1943 plots against Hitler through Jurist and Anti-Nazi Resistance Figure Hans von Dohnanyi, who was actively involved in the planning.

Death and burial ground of Bonhoeffer, Dietrich.

His involvement in plans by members of the Abwehr, Hans Oster and Admiral Wilhelm Franz Canaris,
  to assassinate Adolf Hitler (see Hitler parents  resulted in his arrest in April 1943   and his subsequent execution by hanging in April 1945, in concentration camp Flossenbürg, 23 days before the Nazis’ surrender. His view of Christianity’s role in the secular world has become very influential. Bonhoeffer is buried at the age of 39, on the Dorotheenstädtischer und Friedrichswerder Friedhof in Berlin. In 1940, he began to systematically contact various resistance groups, among them the church groups through his brother Dietrich and the military groups through his brothers-in-law Justus Delbrück , Hans von Dohnányi, and Rüdiger Schleicher , in particular, the group led by Admiral Canaris  . He was arrested for his part in the July 20th assassination attempt on Hitler on 01-10-1944 and was sentenced to death on 02-02-1945. The sentence was carried out in the night of April 22 to 23, 1945, age 44, by a death squad from the Reichssicherheitshauptamt at the fairgrounds near the Lehrter Prison.
The disposition of Bonhoeffer’s remains is not known. His body may have been cremated outside the camp along with hundreds of other recently executed or dead prisoners, or American troops may have placed his body in one of several mass graves in which they interred the unburied dead of the camp.

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