Meet Henry Gerecke, the American chaplain who embodied Christ’s mission to seek the lost, no matter how loathsome

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Scott Matthew's picture

As an active army chaplain, thanks for the link to this good story/review.

For those interested who are near or passing through Columbia, SC, you will find the Army Chaplain Corps museum at nearby Ft. Jackson.  It's a small museum, but stop by and see the display of Chaplain Gerecke.  My friend, Tim--the museum tech, would love to show you around.  You'll see photos of Gerecke ministering to the detained Nazis along with the letter that about a dozen key leaders (Goering & Jodl) wrote to Gerecke's wife, Alma.  See, CH Gerecke was due to return home in late '45, but these Nazis wrote a pleading, personal letter to Alma Gerecke in southern MO requesting she "permit" him to stay longer.  Can you imagine getting a personal letter signed w/ personal notes from such notorious henchmen you've seen in the news at the Nuremburg trial?  There it is for you to see.  It's also a good case study in decision making between perceived family and ministry obligations.  Needless to say the letter worked, but most likely wasn't the key or only motivating factor for Gerecke to remain in Nuremberg for nearly another year.

rogercarlson's picture

What an incredible story.  As a pastor of a small church and a chaplain in various disciplines, I was encouraged.

Roger Carlson, Pastor
Berean Baptist Church