Dietrich Bonhoeffer, courtesy Dover Beach

‘Coffee with Dead People’ is a recurring series on figures, historical and otherwise, I find to be fascinating, reflections on their lives and works mashed up with mine. And they’re dead.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was one of the most brilliant theological and philosophical minds of the 20th century, a textbook example of what might have been…

…had he not been executed by the Germans with Allied artillery virtually within earshot?

…had he decided to stay in the United States under asylum, as his friend Reinhold Niebuhr pleaded with him to do?

…had he not maintained his moral compass and theological integrity in the face of a tyrannical cultural movement?

My first encounter with Bonhoeffer was in college, where fervent and zealous fundamentalists gravitated to The Cost of Discpleship merely on the name of the work alone. In all likelihood, none of them probably read and understood the…

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