American Religious Responses to Kristallnacht by M. Mazzenga

By M. Mazzenga

This book examines how American Protestants, Catholics and Jews replied to the persecution of Jews in Germany and German-occupied territory within the Nineteen Thirties. The essays concentrate on American non secular responses to Kristallnacht and characterize the 1st exam of multi-religious workforce responses to the beginnings of the Holocaust.

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Additional resources for American Religious Responses to Kristallnacht

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43 By the end of 1941, they certainly realized that their efforts literally meant life and death for the European Jews. Even as the deportations to the east began, some leaders still hoped to save parts of the Jewish population. In February 1940, 1,200 German Jews were deported without warning from the town of Stettin. In the foreign protests that followed, Adolf Freudenberg, director of the refugee office at the WCC in Geneva, wired the FCC for money. He estimated that he needed $4,400 a month to enable more refugees to enter Switzerland.

S. Federal Council of Churches had been in the first two weeks following Kristallnacht, their protests were almost entirely rhetorical in nature. A few urged the American and Canadians governments Fatherhood of God & Brotherhood of Man 49 to pressure the Germans, or appealed directly to Hitler through the German ambassador Dieckhoff. Only rarely, however, did the practical matter of aid to the victims of Nazi persecution emerge as a theme. The fact that many of the Jews suffering under Hitler were not even Jews by faith seems to have almost entirely escaped the American Protestant community, though it was a regular point made by Frank Ritchie and his colleagues in the American Committee for Christian German Refugees, and taken up regularly in the Churchman and other liberal Protestant publications.

Interpretations such as these illustrate that the mainline Protestant leaders who responded to Kristallnacht did so from an ideological position very similar to that of liberal Catholics or the public at large, concerned as they were with the rights and freedoms of liberal democracy as the pinnacle of both Western civilization and the religion of Christ. Sunday, November 20, 1938—Day of Prayer In the days leading up to the November 20 day of prayer, American Protestant leaders continued to speak out against Nazism and on behalf Fatherhood of God & Brotherhood of Man 47 of the Jews.

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