Professor Greg Snyder, chair of the religion department, compares in a Charlotte Observer op-ed the failure of Christianity in contemporary America and pre-World War II Germany. He notes that theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer in his book Cost of Discipleship challenged Christians with a call for “actual, meaningful discipleship.” Hitler’s “German Christianity” led many pastors and parishioners to ignore the increasing evil of the Third Reich. But they weren’t the only Christians who fell short of Christ’s call. Bonhoeffer also spent time at Union Theological Seminary before the war, and was troubled by a fundamental paradox he found there–how could American Christians claim to understand the Gospel while practicing racial segregation?
Snyder writes that Bonhoeffer would be saddened that today’s politicians refuse to address the plight of the underclass and repent for past and present actions toward African Americans.
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