International Club of Berne

Requiem for Bonhoeffer

Friday, 31st March 2017 at 6:30pm

Location: Schmiedstube for coffee, French church for performance

This event is in the past.

We meet at 18:30 for coffee first, at the Schmiedstube nearby (Schmiedenplatz 5 3011 Bern, behind the Kornhaus)

Then we attend the Requiem for Bonhoeffer, at 19:30, Französische Kirche

This "Kirchenspiel" work by Walter J. Hollenweger portrays through music, dance and theater, some important periods of the life and activity of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer. This German theologian and pastor participated in the resistance against Hitler and was executed in a concentration camp a few weeks before the end of WWII.

The powerful music of Brahms’ Requiem sung by two choirs frames this multifaceted work, which includes soprano solos, spirituals from Michael Tippett’s Oratorio “A child of our time” and other songs from different periods. Dance, theatrical scenes and dramatic readings (in German) provide added dimensions.

It is a moving and extraordinary work of art.

The choirs are from the Konzertverein Bern and the Church of Herzogenbuchsee.

Admission is free and there is a collection.

Simon Jenny, Director
Fritz Krämer, Conductor
Elisabeth Anna Jenny, Choreography
Felicitas Erb, Soprano
Pawel Mazurkiewicz, Piano
Alfred Palm as Dietrich Bonhoeffer

See the poster on

About Bonhoeffer —


Displaying 4 comments
Graham wrote
at 10:48pm on Tuesday, 28th March 2017
See also this presentation from 2006 at Muristalden campus
There are lots of references.
Graham wrote
at 10:43pm on Tuesday, 28th March 2017
I understand attending are Irene, Nazanin, and Ulrike; perhaps others.
Graham wrote
at 4:51pm on Tuesday, 28th March 2017
That last comment was not the full Wikipedia entry, it stops aroun d 1935.

See also

Graham wrote
at 4:44pm on Tuesday, 28th March 2017
Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (4 February 1906 – 9 April 1945) was a German Lutheran pastor, theologian, anti-Nazi dissident, and key founding member of the Confessing Church ( Bekennende Kirche ). His writings on Christianity's role in the secular world have become widely influential, and his book The Cost of Discipleship has become a modern classic.

Apart from his theological writings, Bonhoeffer was known for his staunch resistance to Nazi dictatorship, including vocal opposition to Hitler's euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews. He was arrested in April 1943 by the Gestapo and imprisoned at Tegel prison for one and a half years. Later he was transferred to a Nazi concentration camp. After being associated with the plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, he was quickly tried, along with other accused plotters, including former members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office), and then executed by hanging on 9 April 1945 as the Nazi regime was collapsing.

He studied in New York and met Frank Fisher, a black fellow seminarian who introduced him to Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, where Bonhoeffer taught Sunday school and formed a lifelong love for African-American spirituals, a collection of which he took back to Germany. He heard Adam Clayton Powell, Sr., preach the Gospel of Social Justice and became sensitive to not only social injustices experienced by minorities but also the ineptitude of the church to bring about integration. Bonhoeffer began to see things "from below"—from the perspective of those who suffer oppression.

Later Bonhoeffer referred to his impressions abroad as the point at which he "turned from phraseology to reality." He also learned to drive an automobile, although he failed the driving test three times. He traveled by car through the United States to Mexico, where he had been invited to speak on the subject of peace. His early visits to Italy, Libya, Spain, the United States, Mexico, and Cuba opened Bonhoeffer to ecumenism.

After returning to Germany in 1931, Bonhoeffer became a lecturer in systematic theology at the University of Berlin. Bonhoeffer's promising academic and ecclesiastical career was dramatically altered with Nazi ascension to power on 30 January 1933. He was a determined opponent of the regime from its first days. Two days after Hitler was installed as Chancellor, Bonhoeffer delivered a radio address in which he attacked Hitler and warned Germany against slipping into an idolatrous cult.

When Bonhoeffer was offered a parish post in eastern Berlin in the autumn of 1933, he refused it in protest at the nationalist policy, and accepted a two-year appointment as a pastor of two German-speaking Protestant churches in London.

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By Graham 1 day ago

Great Party. Why were you not there? The Committee would like to know what can be improved with our planning and information.

Wednesday 11 December 7:00 pm - Café Français

Thursday 12 December 6:00 pm - German Café
Thursday 12 December 7:30 pm Service of Carols and Lessons at the Church of the Holy Spirit in Bahnhofplatz. Over 500 of the English-speaking community will be there!

Friday 13 December 6:30pm - T.G.I.F! (Thank Goodness It’s Friday) at Restaurant Pittaria

Friday 13 December from 8:30 pm - Christmas Party at the English-speaking Club


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