OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

Mothering the Fatherland: A Protestant Sisterhood Repents for the Holocaust

ISBN : 9780199363469

Price(incl.tax): 
¥12,628
Author: 
George Faithful
Pages
304 Pages
Format
Hardcover
Size
162 x 241 mm
Pub date
May 2014
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How should one respond, personally or theologically, to genocide committed on one's behalf? After the Allied bombing of Darmstadt, Germany, in 1944, some Lutheran young women perceived their citys destruction as an expression of God's wratha punishment for Hitlers murder of six million Jews, purportedly on behalf of the German people. George Faithful tells the story of a number of these young women, who formed the Ecumenical Sisterhood of Mary in 1947 in order to embrace lives of radical repentance for the sins of the German people against God and against the Jews. Under Mother Basilea Schlink, the sisters embraced an ideology of collective national guilt. According to Schlink, a handful of true Christians were called to lead their nation in repentance, interceding and making spiritual sacrifices as priests on its behalf and saving it from looming destruction. Schlink explained that these ideas were rooted in her reading of the Hebrew Bible; in fact, Faithful discovers, they also bore the influence of German nationalism. Schlinks vision resulted in penitential practices that dominated the life of her community. While the women of the sisterhood were subject to each other, they elevated themselves and their spiritual authority above that of any male leaders. They offered female and gender-neutral paradigms of self-sacrifice as normative for all Christians. Mothering the Fatherland shows how the sisters overturned German Protestant norms for gender roles, communal life, and nationalism in their pursuit of redemption.

Index: 

List of Figures
Caution to the Reader
Acknowledgements
Frequently Used German Words
Introduction
PART I: PROTESTANT GUILT
Chapter 1: Guilt in Klara Schlink's Thought, 1920-1947
Chapter 2: Public Confessions of German National Guilt, 1945-1947
Chapter 3: Mother Basilea Schlink's Theology of Guilt
PART II: THEY, THE PEOPLES
Chapter 4: The German Volk
Chapter 5: Schlink's Pseudo-Judaic, Germanic Vision of Nationhood
PART III: REPENTING FOR OTHERS
Chapter 6: Defining Repentance in Schlink's Theology
Chapter 7: Schlink and the Sisters' Repentance as a Priestly and Monastic Service
Chapter 8: The Place of Gender in Schlink and the Sisters' Repentance
Chapter 9: The Creation of Sacred Space in Schlink and the Sisters' Repentance
Afterword
Appendix 1: The Barmen Declaration
Appendix 2: The Stuttgart Confession
Appendix 3: The Darmstadt Statement
References
Archival and Unpublished Primary Sources
Published Primary Sources
Secondary Sources

About the author: 

George Faithful studied at Wake Forest University, the Universite de Nantes, and the Humboldt-Universitat in Berlin before receiving his Ph.D. in historical theology from Saint Louis University

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