Wednesday, September 29, 2010

We Want Joy Very Badly

A selection from a letter by Dietrich Bonhoeffer to his parents. Bonhoeffer was a German pastor and theologian who joined a conspiracy against Hitler's life. He was arrested in April 1943 and died on a Nazi gallows in April 1945. This letter was written early in his imprisonment, June 4, 1943. It reveals how much he appreciated receiving letters during his incarceration.

Thank you very much for your letters. They are always too short for me, but of course I understand! It is as though the prison gates were opened for a moment, and I could share a little of your life outside. Joy is a thing that we want very badly in this solemn building, where one never hears a laugh—it seems to get even the warders down—and we exhaust all our reserves of it from within and without.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer: Letters and Papers from Prison, edited by Eberhard Bethge, The Macmillan Company, New York, 1971, p. 49.

1 comment:

Becky said...

Thank you for your posts; this is just a note to let you know how much I appreciate them.