Family Publications have come up with yet another first-rate book. "The Cross and the Third Reich" by John Frain looks at the opposition to Nazism from Catholics and other Christians. The focus of the book is principally on Catholic opposition (which was in fact stronger) but he does not ignore the heroic Christians of other Churches who stood up for the truth.
Frain includes a detailed examination of the Concordat, of Mit Brennender Sorge, the currency" and "immorality" trials staged by the Nazis and the propaganda campaign which used them in an attempt to discredit the Church.
There is a rich chapter on individual opposition to Nazism, looking at figures such as Edith Stein and Cardinal Clemens von Galen, as well as those who are less well-known: Alfred Delp SJ, and key protestants who opposed the regime's injustices.
One of the important sources for the book is "The Persecution of the Catholic Church in the Third Reich - Facts and Documents" published by Burns and Oates in 1940 and recently reprinted.
"The Cross and the Third Reich" is an inspiring read. It shows how heroic Catholics and other Christians responded there and then to Nazism as it was growing in Germany as a popular movement, supported by vast crowds and hysterical popular acclaim. It is easy with hindsight to say what people should have done. Far more challenging is to compare their own witness with ours in easier circumstances.
The Cross and the Third Reich is available from Family Publications (Hardback 336 pages £19.95) and from Amazon as below.