The International Bonhoeffer Society – English Language Section (IBS-ELS) is pleased to announce that Dr. Lori Brandt Hale, Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion and Philosophy at Augsburg University in Minneapolis, Minnesota (USA), has been elected the eighth president of the Society’s Board of Directors. The IBS-ELS includes members from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, and beyond.

Dr. Brandt Hale has served in leadership roles in the Bonhoeffer Society, at the Board level and with the Bonhoeffer Unit of the American Academy of Religion, since 1999. She served as Secretary of the Board from 2005-2017 and Vice-President from 2017-2023, chairing strategic planning initiatives and implementation work since 2018. That work resulted in the design and launch of this website in June of 2022 (with visitors from 138 countries to date).

She is the co-editor, with W. David Hall, of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Theology, and Political Resistance (Lexington Books, June 2020). It was the second volume in a series by Lexington Books, “Faith and Politics: Political Theology in a New Key.”  Together with Hall, she now serves as the editor for that series.

Inspired by her increasingly diverse students at Augsburg University, where she has taught since 1998, and her resolute commitment to interfaith engagement, Brandt Hale’s chapter in the political resistance book is a constructive read of Bonhoeffer titled, “The Interfaith Imperative: How Bonhoeffer Compels Interfaith Action.” She is the co-author, with Stephen Haynes, of the introductory text Bonhoeffer for Armchair Theologians (Westminster John Knox, 2009) which has been translated into Japanese and Portuguese. And, she has written numerous book chapters and articles as well as offered webinars and podcasts on Bonhoeffer’s political resistance, understanding of vocation, and relevance in contemporary times, including work addressing the now perennial question, “Is this a Bonhoeffer moment?”

At Augsburg, Brandt Hale currently serves as the chair for the Division of Humanities and Fine Arts and teaches courses that meet general education requirements in the department of religion and philosophy, including a class on Dietrich Bonhoeffer, theology, and political resistance. She was honored to be the recipient of the 2022 “Faculty of the Year” Award given by the Augsburg Day Student Government.

Professor Hale is excited to continue her work in leading the IBS-ELS to fulfill its mission and vision:

The International Bonhoeffer Society – English Language Section (IBS-ELS) is dedicated to advancing the theology and legacy of German pastor-theologian and Nazi resister, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, in the academy, church, and world. The IBS-ELS encourages critical scholarship, engaged pedagogy, constructive readings, and public engagement of Bonhoeffer’s collected writings and serves as an authoritative and responsible resource in those endeavors.

Dr. Brandt Hale delivered inaugural remarks at the 2023 IBS-ELS Annual Meeting & Dinner. The six living past presidents were all in attendance.

Reflections on the Bonhoeffer Society’s Mission and Vision

L to R: Mark Brocker, H. Gaylon Barker, John Matthews, Lori Brandt Hale, Jenny McBride, Michael Lukens, Clifford Green

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The English Language Section is dedicated to advancing the theology and legacy of German pastor-theologian and Nazi resister, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, in the academy, church, and world, and has been on the forefront of this work for the last fifty years.

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