Judson Press book elucidates Baptist response to Holocaust

VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 9/1/17)—How did Baptists respond to the rise of the Nazis in Germany and their persecution of the Jewish people throughout Europe? Dr. Lee B. Spitzer, general secretary of American Baptist Churches USA, delves into this history and its implications for Christians today in his thoroughly researched and eminently accessible new book, “Baptists, Jews, and the Holocaust: The Hand of Sincere Friendship.”

Covering the full history of all Baptists during this period, the book is rich with primary resource material—including personal stories, primary source documents and speeches—providing readers with insight concerning Christianity and the Holocaust, as well as Baptist identity and history.

“This is the first truly comprehensive assessment of the Baptist response to the repression and then persecution of Jews in the 1930s,” says Dr. Reid S. Trulson, retired executive director of American Baptist International Ministries. “This rich contribution to Holocaust studies—as well as to Baptist, African-American and women’s studies—is the story of a great evil and the responses of a people of faith.”

Adds Dr. Deborah Van Broekhoven, executive director emeritus of American Baptist Historical Society: “More than a study of attitudes toward the Holocaust, this book is a nuanced and helpful primer on race relations and the challenges of moving from sympathetic resolutions to action.”

This groundbreaking volume is a must-read for church historians, Holocaust scholars, Baptist history buffs and anyone interested in interfaith relations. It comes at a critical point in current events as the nation again faces anti-Semitic rhetoric.

Spitzer previously served as executive minister of American Baptist Churches of New Jersey. He is author of several books, including “Making Friends, Making Disciples: Growing Your Church through Authentic Relationships” (Judson Press, 2010), “Endless Possibilities: Exploring the Journeys of Your Life,” “A Summer’s Journey: The Journal of a Pastor’s Sabbatical in Israel” and “Jesus Christ from Cover to Cover: Tracing the Messianic Journey from Genesis to Revelation.”

Founded in 1824, Judson Press is a publishing ministry of American Baptist Home Mission Societies, American Baptist Churches USA. It is committed to producing Christ-centered leadership resources for the transformation of individuals, congregations, communities and cultures.

American Baptist Home Mission Societies partners with American Baptists to promote Christian faith, cultivate Christ-centered leaders and disciples, and bring healing and transformation to communities across the United States and Puerto Rico.

American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse Christian denominations today, with approximately 5,000 congregations comprised of 1.3 million members, across the United States and Puerto Rico, all engaged in God’s mission around the world.