This week in Christian history: Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Francis Xavier, George Mueller

Dietrich Bonhoeffer executed – April 9, 1945

A blown-up image of the site at Flossenberg Concentration Camp where Dietrich Bonhoeffer was executed in 1945 is shown in an image gallery at the Becket Fund's Canterbury Medal Dinner at the Four Seasons Hotel in Washington, D.C., May, 12, 2011. Author Eric Metaxas received the medal this year. |

This week marks the anniversary of when notable German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer was executed for his involvement in a plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler.

A notable theologian, Bonhoeffer wrote the influential book The Cost of Discipleship, which coined the phrase “cheap grace” to describe Christian belief that did not involve personal transformation.

Bonhoeffer was a longtime critic of the Third Reich, criticizing the Nazi regime in a radio broadcast two days after Hitler took power.

Hung less than a month before Germany surrendered, Bonhoeffer’s last recorded words were, “This is the end–for me, the beginning of life.”

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