Cover image for Betrayal : German churches and the Holocaust
Betrayal : German churches and the Holocaust
Ericksen, Robert P.
Publication Information:
Minneapolis : Fortress Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
224 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Assessing the heritage: German Protestant theologians, Nazis, and the "Jewish question" / Robert P. Ericksen -- Storm troopers of Christ: the German Christian Movement and the ecclesiastical final solution / Doris L. Bergen -- When Jesus was an Aryan: the Protestant Church and antisemitic propaganda / Susannah Heschel -- The Confessing Church and antisemitism: Protestant identity, German nationhood, and the exclusion of Jews / Shelley Baranowski -- Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Hitler's persecution of the Jews / Kenneth C. Barnes -- Pius XII, the Jews, and the German Catholic Church / Guenter Lewy -- Joseph Lortz and a Catholic accommodation with National Socialism / Michael B. Lukens -- Post-Holocaust theology: German theological responses since 1945 / Micha Brumlik.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DS146.G4 B49 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Leading scholars in the field of Holocaust studies place the Nazi era in full historical perspective. This book is a broad overview of the Protestant and Catholic responses, including institutional churches, the theological faculties, and theologians, such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Joseph Lortz. Included are assessments of the German Christian movement, the Confessing Church, the German Catholic church, the Vatican, and the free churches. Various responses and individuals--villains, heroes, equivocators--are highlighted.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Shortly after his election as Reichkanzler in 1933, Hitler informed a group of Methodist women that his mandate for the Third Reich (politically, "Third Empire" but religiously, "Third Kingdom" as rooted in German Trinitarian pietism) was "From God's word." Arguably, centuries of Christian teachings of alienation from and contempt for Jewish people contributed to the German Christian hatred of Jews before, during, and after the Shoah. Why, how, and who in the Christian support of Hitler's war against the Jews, and what we can learn about German Christian (mainly Catholic and Lutheran) culpability in the near total destruction of European Jewry, are the focus of this anthology. Ericksen (Pacific Lutheran Univ.) and Heschel (Dartmouth College) revise previously published essays; the former in exposing the role played by influential German Protestant theologians and the latter on Protestant antisemitic propaganda. Other chapters by seasoned American and German scholars talk of various degrees of accommodation with National Socialism played by ecclesiastical movements (Deutsche Christen, Confessing Church, and German Catholic Church) and revered Church personalities (Pius XII and Dietrich Bonhoeffer). The final chapter assesses progress or lack of it made to contra-Judaeos preaching and teaching in post-Holocaust German theology. An important contribution to a neglected field in Shoah education. Upper-division undergraduates and above. Z. Garber; Los Angeles Valley College