Helmut Thielicke was one of the most read and most listened to theologians of our time. Like few others, he repeatedly came down from the ivory tower of academic religion in order to build bridges between the church and the world. He did not belong to Protestantism alone; his works were – and are still – closely followed in Catholic theology, discussed in dissertations and reviews, and published widely. In this autobiography, written in 1983, Thielicke sets forth his memoirs from a long and full life. His narrative is filled with deeply thoughtful reflections about the poignancy of life, told with a delightful humour that invites us into every story and encounter. Thielicke also introduces us to the figures he counted among his friends and acquaintances: Karl Barth, Konrad Adenauer, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Dwight Eisenhower, Helmut Kohl and Jimmy Carter.
Thielicke was a witness to many of the most significant events of our century; his life history is interwoven with the Kaiser period, the Weimar Republic, the rise of the Third Reich, a divided Germany, and the tumultuous 1960s. From the perspective of this single life we are afforded a broad and clear vision of the moments that have shaped the generation leading us into the twenty-first century.
Translated by David R. Law, this reprinted edition of Notes from a Wayfarer was published to commemorate the thirtieth anniversary of Helmut Thielicke’s death.