Sometimes I wonder why I take the time to write.
While I enjoy writing, it doesn’t seem to be changing or transforming the world. In fact, “the pen is mightier than the sword” seems a bit lost when we are inundated with words upon words. Blogging seems ridiculous in a cyber world overflowing with anyone and everyone’s thoughts and opinions. Amidst the suffering and tragedies occurring daily, why do I post my thoughts, experiences, and reflections? Why add one more little voice to the cacophony?
The other day, I stumbled upon a name that I knew little about yet was not entirely unknown to me. Sophie Scholl. Curious, I found a website with a story about the White Rose Resistance and the role of Sophie Scholl. In a few moments, I felt as if I had discovered the reason I stumbled upon this article.
One day in 1942, copies of a leaflet entitled “The White Rose” suddenly appeared at the University of Munich. The leaflet contained an anonymous essay that said that the Nazi system had slowly imprisoned the German people and was now destroying them. The Nazi regime had turned evil. It was time, the essay said, for Germans to rise up and resist the tyranny of their own government. At the bottom of the essay, the following request appeared: “Please make as many copies of this leaflet as you can and distribute them.”
The leaflet caused a tremendous stir among the student body. It was the first time that internal dissent against the Nazi regime had surfaced in Germany. The essay had been secretly written and distributed by Hans Scholl and his friends.
Holocaust Resistance: The White Rose – A Lesson in Dissent, Jacob G. Hornberger
This young Sophie Scholl along with her brother and friends built a resistance through writing. Speaking out against the Nazi regime was a sufficient reason to be executed by the state. What was the reason they used mere words to fight Hitler? Sophie told the courtroom during the “trial.”
Sophie Scholl shocked everyone in the courtroom when she remarked to [Judge] Freisler: “Somebody, after all, had to make a start. What we wrote and said is also believed by many others. They just don’t dare to express themselves as we did.”
Speaking the truth in a world filled with lies is a courageous undertaking. The truth has a power to stir and ignite people. It is a bold, troublesome thing that inflames hearts, encouraging them to risk all for the pursuit of truth. Not everyone is courageous enough to speak this truth. It makes others uncomfortable and it often costs us something. I’ve had more than one occasion where questions in the classroom resulted in uncomfortable sessions of truth-telling. When students ask questions about divorce, contraception, homosexuality, mortal sins, and so on, I try to tread lightly, but truthfully, as I attempt to explain the wisdom of the Church. Continue reading “Sophie Scholl: The Power of the Written Word”