Learning about Memphis History and Bonhoeffer

A little while ago, we had the privilege of having dinner with Professor Steve Haynes of the Religious Studies department. Our conversation began with a discussion of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the author of Life Together, a book that the Ruka holds very dear to our hearts. We talked a lot about what Bonhoeffer means to us and how we apply Life Together in our fellowship.

From there, our conversation progressed to the history of various churches in Memphis and how they tackled issues of racial integration in the 1960s. There was a lot that we learned in this discussion, such as how the ecumenical community of Memphis has evolved over time and how segregation prompted important splits within large churches.

Professor Haynes also gave us an interesting insight into the inner working of Rhodes College, and how the Life and Search programs have grown and changed over time. This conversation really helped me personally understand the rationale behind requiring Rhodes students to take three semesters of either Religious Studies or Humanities classes, and it enabled me to reflect on the classes I took as a part of the Life program. Talking about these topics additionally assisted us in discovering facts about our college, which was certainly very enriching.

All in all, it was a great dinner full of fascinating conversation and delicious food!


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