Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Life

1906: Feb 4: Dietrich and twin sister, Sabine, born in Breslau

1912: Bonhoeffers move to Berlin

1913: Dietrich enters grammar school after early years of home schooling

1918: Oldest brother, Walter, killed in World War I

1920: At 14, decides he will be a theologian

1921: Confirmed at Grunewald Church, Berlin

1923: Begins theological studies at Tübingen University

1924: Travels to Rome and North Africa with brother Klaus; Begins studies at Berlin University

1927: Receives licentiate in theology, summa cum laude; defends doctoral thesis, The Communion of Saints

1928: Assistant pastor of congregation in Barcelona, Spain

1929: Assistant in systematic theology department at Berlin University

1930: Second dissertation, Act and Being, qualifies him for teaching position; July 31: first public lecture; Sept. 5: begins year of study at Union Theological Seminary in New York

1931: July: meets theologian Karl Barth; Aug.: appointed lecturer in theology at Berlin University; Sept.: appointed youth secretary of the World Alliance for Promoting International Friendship through the Churches; Oct.: appointed chaplain at Technical College, Berlin (serves until 1933); Nov. 15: ordained; during this period, “becomes a Christian”

1932: Teaches confirmation class in poor section of Berlin (classes begin in late ’31); attends ecumenical meetings in Geneva and elsewhere

1933: Feb. 1: radio broadcast on “the leadership principle” cut off the air; April: article on “The Church and the Jewish Question”; Sept. 21: with Martin Niemöller, organizes Pastors’ Emergency League, which opposes the “Aryan Clause” excluding Jews from ministry; Oct. 17: pastors two congregations ...

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