Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Forgotten Heritage of Faith

I recently received an e-mail newsletter from the Evangelical Covenant Church featuring an interesting story about two foreign exchange students from Germany who found Christ while living with their host families.

The story is wonderful, but the most surprising, frightening aspect was that one of the teenagers was completely ignorant of Germany’s Christian heritage.

The girl had no understanding of the faith when she arrived, says Sparrman. "She was told in Germany that going to church was part of being an American. The Germans told her that it wasn't like it was in Germany - it was exciting."

Her parents had grown up entirely under East German rule and no one in the family knew of the Germany's rich Christian history. "She had no clue about the Christian heritage of her country," Sparrman says. "No idea about Luther, no idea about Bonhoeffer."

If a Christian heritage dating back to the eighth century can be completely erased from common knowledge in just over 50 years, how long would it take to obliterate a heritage only half as old?  How close is America to this same fate?  Will we Christians do it to ourselves in an effort to appear nonjudgmental and tolerant?  May it never be so.

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