On Saturday, June 22, at 4 p.m., Orcas Island Community Church will present a public lecture titled “The Life and Witness of Dietrich Bonhoeffer.”
This lecture will be given by Rev. Dr. Bryan Burton, ordained in the Presbyterian Church of Ireland. Burton received a Ph.D. in theology from Queen’s University in Belfast, focusing on the theology of Karl Barth and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
For the past 30 years, Burton has been teaching classes in both seminaries and churches on these theologians. He has pastored churches in Southern California, the Twin Cities, Belfast, New Jersey, Seattle and now Florida. He has been teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students at Queen’s University, Drew and Princeton, Fuller Theological Seminary, Regent College and The Seattle School of Theology and Psychology.
Burton was first drawn to Bonhoeffer in high school.
“Shortly after becoming a Christian, I had a youth pastor who encouraged me to read C.S. Lewis’ ‘Mere Christianity’ and Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s ‘Cost of Discipleship and Life Together,’” Burton said.
He refers to Bonhoeffer as a pastor and a theologian who knew how to communicate Christianity in the church and in the wider culture.
Bonhoeffer (1906-1945) was martyred for his faith and political stance against the Nazi regime.
Burton reflects, “I probably quote Bonhoeffer more in preaching than anyone except CS Lewis. I always encourage people to read ‘Cost of Discipleship’ and ‘Life Together,’ supporting the conviction that one cannot live a faithful Christian life of witness without sharing life together in a Christian community.”
This lecture will briefly explore Bonhoeffer’s life, which shaped and formed his thinking and actions. There will be a brief survey of his works as a matter of introducing his thinking and its development.
For more information, go to www.orcaschurch.org.