EX LIBRIS ONLINE– Bonhoeffer:  Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy

A tale of spine-chilling drama, history, and heroism

By Deena C. Bouknight

exlibris-5e7e8392-a367aaceDespite its intimidating size at 600 pages, Eric Metaxas’ biography Bonhoeffer:  Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy is a page turner. Metaxas, who also penned the recent biography of Martin Luther just in time for the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation this past October, clearly conveys ardent fascination of his subjects. In fact, to write about Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Metaxas traveled to Germany to not only research the man’s life, but to also sit down with those who actually knew him before his life was cut short by the Nazis. Metaxas writes in his acknowledgements: “To have broken bread with those who broke bread with the subject of this book was an unmerited honor I will treasure all my life.”

While digging into his subject’s life, Metaxas learned of commonality.  Metaxas’ maternal grandfather was a “reluctant” German soldier killed during World War II in 1944. Dietrich Bonhoeffer – who not only resisted going along with his native country’s Nazi movement, but was involved in a plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler – was murdered the following year. Metaxas says that this correlation left him staggered when he first heard Bonhoeffer’s story. He shared in a Harper’s Magazine 2010 interview about the book: “As a German-American, I was especially touched by his story, because he was a German who had spoken up for those who couldn’t speak. First and foremost for the Jews of Europe, but also for many like my grandfather, who were powerless and who in their own way were also victims of the Nazis.”

51MUNrgfb9L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

Metaxas sets up the story of who Bonhoeffer was and who he came to be with the first chapter, aptly titled “Family and Childhood,” yet, this is no dry, encyclopedia beginning. Descriptively, the author shows readers the idyllic, faithful, and protected home in which he was raised. It was a home where he and his twin sister, Sabine, as well as six other siblings, were encouraged by his teacher mother and his psychiatrist father – who held the appointment of the chair of psychiatry and neurology in Berlin until his death in 1948 – to think critically.  Metaxas writes, “Karl Bonhoeffer taught his children to speak only when they had something to say. He did not tolerate sloppiness of expression any more than he tolerated self-pity or selfishness or boastful pride. His children loved and respected him in a way that made them eager to gain his approval.”

Thus was implanted in Dietrich a gift for quality articulation; he learned that his spoken and written words could hold weight, and he decided to pursue a degree in theology and a calling as a pastor. Yet, while he was learning to hone his skills for expression and rhetoric, Adolf Hitler was rising to power and squelching not only free speech but freedom of religion as well. Instead of aligning himself with Hitler’s views as early as 1933, when Hitler deemed himself chancellor of Germany, the 25-year-old pastor and lecturer of systematic theology immediately began to speak against them. In fact, two days after Hitler became the most powerful man in Germany, Dietrich delivered a radio address that caused many – including Hitler and his minions – to take notice. Ardently, Dietrich warned fellow Germans not to idolize the Fuhrer and become seduced onto a compromising path; the radio address was cut off mid-sentence.

Thus began the dangerous journey on which Dietrich never wavered. His writings, speaking engagements, preaching, and meetings with secret anti-Nazi spies lead him closer and closer to peril. He even established the Confessing Church in an attempt to keep Hitler from destroying Christianity in Germany. A master of the profound quote, Dietrich wrote, “The question is really: Christianity or Germanism? And the sooner the conflict is revealed in the clear light of the day the better.”

Partly because his beloved twin sister Sabina married a cultural Jew who was baptized Christian, but mostly because he was a man of God who considered all human beings worthy of respect and honor, often quoting Galatians 3:28 — “There is neither Jew nor Greek, bond nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus,” Dietrich entreated true believers to stand against the harsh treatment of Jews by Nazis. One of his most reflective one-liners is this: “Not to speak is to speak; not to act is to act.”

Mid-way through the book, Metaxas even begins to weave in the love story between Dietrich and Maria von Wedemeyer that would, sadly, not come to fruition.

Significantly, Metaxas begins each chapter with a weighty quote by either Dietrich Bonhoeffer, those who knew him, or someone else important at that time; the words are designed to paint the picture of a man who left his mark on the world in a wholly inspiring and uniquely courageous way.

 

Advertisements

FROM THE EDITOR: JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018

_D5A7718KEEPING RESOLUTIONS

People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing — that’s why we recommend it daily. — Zig Ziglar

BY MARGARET CLAY

Everyone loves a fresh start. Each year, millions of Americans ring in the new year with aspirations through the ritual of New Year’s resolutions. Depressingly, resolutions are rarely kept; nearly 50 percent of Americans set goals this time of year, but only eight percent actually follow through. It probably comes as no shock that approximately 80 percent of January gym joiners abandon their membership by the second week of February.

The origins of resolutions, interestingly, are religious. The ancient Babylonians receive credit for creating both the tradition of setting resolutions as well as celebrating the new year about 4,000 years ago. During an extensive 12-day festival, they made vows to the gods to pay their debts and return anything borrowed … with the added incentive that if they kept their word, they would bask in the gods’ favor that year. If not, they faced divine displeasure.

Roughly 2,000 years later in ancient Rome, Julius Caesar established January as the beginning of the new year, which had previously been in March. The month’s namesake, Janus, was the two-faced god of doorways and arches, symbolically looking backwards into the past and also ahead into the coming year. The Romans offered sacrifices to him at the start of the new year, promising good conduct.

Today, Americans’ top 10 resolutions include: 1) Improve health through losing weight, exercising more, eating healthier, or drinking less. 2) Curb a bad habit, like smoking or nail biting. 3) Boost mental well-being — laugh more, think more positively, be less grumpy, reduce stress. 4) Reform finances by saving more or paying off debt. 5) Advance education by finishing a degree, earning a new one, or just taking a Great Courses class for fun. 6) Pick up a new hobby or spend more time improving an old one. 7) Engage in general self-improvement — be more organized, read more, or spend less time on social media. 8) Volunteer and donate more to charities. 9) Spend more quality time with family members. 10) Make new friends.

Most people have trouble sticking to their resolutions (including yours truly) primarily because they do not implement the needed strategies for success. Some helpful suggestions for meeting goals include: don’t set unrealistic goals that are ultimately unachievable. Instead, strive for small, manageable changes and then grow from there. Be specific and create an action plan, then strive to complete those steps as your daily or weekly goal. Write down your goal and look at it every day. Track your progress … it is a lot easier to resist eating the chocolate chip cookie or skipping a day of exercise if you know you are going to write the failure down in a log. Have an accountability partner to encourage you to stay on track. Set a reward for yourself when you meet your goal.

Whatever your hopes, wishes, and goals for 2018, the very best of luck, and happy New Year from CMM!

Hands on Indie

TALENTED ARTISANS ON DISPLAY AT UPCOMING ONE-DAY-ONLY MARKET

By DEENA C. BOUKNIGHT

Crafty Feast 2013 - by Anne McQuary 20 (1).jpg

 

Indie – “any business or designer not associated with a large company.” This buzzword, defined by Urban Dictionary, conveys the flavor of an upcoming event in Columbia called “Crafty Feast.” The event is the 9th annual indie craft fair to grace the area just in time for Christmas shopping. From 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Saturday, December 10th at Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, handcrafted and repurposed goods will be on display.

 

Crafty Feast Dec. 13 2015 by Anne McQuary-27 CHI designs.jpg

Close to 100 indie craftspeople are from in and around Columbia, or from South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, and Florida. At least a third of the exhibitors are new to Crafty Feast. Everything from funky, one-of-a-kind pieces to distinct paper products to quality apparel will be on display.

Two booths will even give attendees a chance to try their own hand at making a craft. Plus, a DJ will keep the indie atmosphere upbeat. Crafty Feast Dec. 13 2015 by Anne McQuary-39.jpg

Last year’s Crafty Feast drew almost 3,000 to the one-afternoon, Vista-located market. Admission is $3. For more information about Crafty Feast’s crafty vendors, visit http://www.craftyfeast.com.

Crafty Feast 2016 photos by Anne McQuary 54.jpg

FROM THE EDITOR: DECEMBER 2017

HOLIDAY RECEIPTS

COOKING THE OLD-FASHIONED WAY

BY MARGARET CLAY

Confession: I have never been a good speller. I struggled at least as much with spelling in fourth grade as I did with chemistry in 10th. One word, among many, that has always perplexed me is the word “receipt.” Why is the “p” silent? Just to add to my confusion is the word “recipe,” which also does not follow any English phonetic rules (if there even are any). Yet, both words sound and look similar to each other.

Upon investigation, it turns out that receipt and recipe used to have the same meaning and derive from the Latin word recipere, which means to receive or take. Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (1386) contains the first known use of the word receipt and is in reference to a medical prescription formula. The use of receipt as a slip of paper acknowledging the receipt of goods in exchange for an amount of money did not begin until the early 17th century.

The word recipe is first recorded about 15 years after Canterbury Tales in a book on surgery. The imperative form of the original Latin verb meaning “take,” recipe was an injunction and frequently the first word used in a prescription (receipt), followed by the list of ingredients the patient was to consume. An abbreviation in the form of the letter R with a bar through the leg still appears on modern medical prescriptions.

Food and medicine have a long history together, as many of the same ingredients used for food preparation were also key in a physician’s practice. Receipt was first used in a culinary sense in 1716, and recipe was similarly recorded not long after. Recipe has gradually replaced receipt for cooking instructions over the decades since.

Surprisingly, the United States has preserved this original use of “receipt” the longest. Upon digging through old cookbooks for “Heirloom Recipes” on page 54, we came across many old, traditional “receipt” books from Charleston and Savannah. We hope you enjoy this article sharing traditional recipes from families across Columbia and its surrounding cities. Perhaps it will conjure up favorite, or forgotten, memories of your grandmother teaching you her favorite receipts!

From all of us at CMM, a very Merry Christmas and happy holiday season!

EX LIBRIS ONLINE: MY HEALTH IS BETTER IN NOVEMBER

SUGGESTIONS FOR WEEKEND READING

Review: My Health is Better in November, Havilah Babcock

My Health Is Better In November, published in 1947 by Havilah Babcock, is a compilation of 35 hunting and fishing stories written by one of South Carolina’s favorite authors. Babcock was actually a native of Virginia, but he spent 38 years as one of USC’s most popular English professors. Living across the street from the Horseshoe at 803 Sumter St., Babcock enjoyed an enviable life as a tenured professor during a time when wild quail abounded. In those days, a man at the end of the work day (or close to it) could rush home, grab his shotgun, a handful of shells, whistle for his dog, and head off for a couple hours of bird hunting before dark. He didn’t have to go far — just the outskirts of town, which in those days might be around Wildewood or Spring Valley. Farmers were happy to allow hunters on their land, and birds were everywhere.

240625.jpgBabcock was a prolific writer. He gained a following and popularity through articles written for Field & Stream as well as other publications. The stories in My Health Is Better In November originally appeared in Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, and Sports Afield during the heyday of the outdoor press when these publications were at their zenith. In this book, Babcock’s stories are humorous “how to” tales on subjects such as what bait to use for bream, the importance of honeysuckle thickets for quail, where to fish for crappie, and how to overcome a shooting slump … as well as how to stay in good standing with your spouse. One of my favorites is a story on how to get rid of chiggers. In this tale, Babcock suffers from the pesky parasite and comes upon squirrel hunter. He asks the hunter how to get rid of them: “‘What kind are they?’ He cocked his head critically, as if the matter called for connoisseurship… [After explaining to Babcock that there is the North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia variety, he goes on to say] ‘thar’s a heap o’ things South Car’lina don’t rate so high in. But I’ll tell you right now, mister, thar ain’t no other state can hold a candle to us in the output of chiggers. Yes, sir’, he snapped his suspenders with state pride, ‘the South Car’lina chigger is in a class by hisself.’”

In Babcock’s day, hunting and fishing were greater pastimes than they are today, but 17 million Americans still hunt, and more than double that fish… making My Health Is Better In November still a relevant choice of reading today. In the final, and titular story, Babcock relates his knowledge of a man (himself), and how nine months out of the year he doesn’t feel too well and some consider him irritable. When the first frost rolls around in November, “there is a noticeable improvement to his health. And when quail season arrives, he is a new man. His outlook is buoyant, his disposition amiable, and the household hears nothing of his woes – not a solitary complaint – for the next three months. For the master of the household is paying ardent court to Bob-White and his bashful bevy.”

Fresh Fall Decorating Ideas

Easy and fabulous tips for upcoming entertaining

By Muffie Vardell Wells

Autumn Table Setting

Decorating your home for Thanksgiving invites natural, earthy, golden snapshots of fall. Forage through your house and yard for natural items– gather an assortment of burlap, raffia, fall leaves, pine cones, pumpkins, gourds, apples, candles, and cut herbs. Focus on fun, inexpensive, and festive!

For a table centerpiece option, use a burlap runner. Zigzag pillar candles down the center and loosely lay eucalyptus throughout. Place red apples and pine cones randomly in the leaves for interest, or, alternately, use small pumpkins and gourds. A few large leaves could also be a decorative accent, and a fall colored tablecloth can serve as an anchor.

Try filling the lower part of glass hurricanes with nuts or berries and set the pillar candle on top. It can also be fun to fill clay flowerpots with greenery and pine cones.

Raffia is your friend. Tie it thickly around pillar candles and attach herbs, such as sage or rosemary. Perhaps you have slices of a tree stump that you can put under the candles. Try tying raffi or colored twine around napkins that hold the silverware. Stick a piece of greenery under the knot. Make place cards from simple squares of cardboard and thread a piece of rosemary at the top. Fresh herbs create an easy way to personalize the table.

Remember to make your centerpieces low. This allows eye contact among guests and encourages lively conversation.

Flickering candles make a holiday table special, and place cards are always a good idea as your guests will not have to think about where they should sit.

Finally, decorate for a fall party way in advance so that the actual entertaining is enjoyable and relaxing.

 

 

FROM THE EDITOR: NOVEMBER 2017

A Cornucopia of Celebration

By Margaret Clay

Although it may not receive its fair share of attention in the commercial holiday madness that starts with Halloween, Thanksgiving remains a favorite for both its time-honored family traditions as well as new ones that celebrate changes that life brings. The culmination of autumn, Thanksgiving ushers in the magic of Christmas as the last colorful leaves fade and the holiday parties and shopping begin.
For many, Thanksgiving is spent with family and friends enjoying beloved, once-a-year recipes. Rarely is a table complete without a sweet potato dish! Read Susan Slack’s article on page 88 for an interesting history of this Southern staple, which dates back to pre-Columbian South America, as well as for new recipes to add to your family’s holiday must-eats.
Another way to spice up the table this year is to explore decorating with dough. Rebecca Walker and Lillian Lippard offer tips and ideas for adding an artistic presentation to your Thanksgiving dishes. Try their suggestions on page 40, and then experiment with some creations of your own.
If you have ever suffered the disappointment in years past of discovering that your carefully baked turkey is bone-dry, read “Et Cetera” on our last page for Muffie Wells’ secrets to delivering a succulent, crowd-pleasing bird from the oven. Or, create a new tradition by serving equally delicious tiny birds locally raised at Manchester Farms. Read more about this amazing quail farm on page 102.
Sometimes family dynamics change, offering an opportunity to create wonderful new ways to celebrate this special holiday. College, work, or marriages can often mean spending Thanksgiving away from home. “Friendsgiving” is ever more an American tradition, both for those celebrating without family, as well as for those who simply want their own fete with friends. Read Anne Postic’s article on page 50 to learn more about this millennial trend. Perhaps it is time to start your own new tradition!
From all of us at CMM, Happy Thanksgiving!

Surviving a Semester Abroad

USC Student Weathered Hurricane Irma’s Wrath on St. Thomas

By Deena C. Bouknight

21559090_1567505303310973_3883584404590056523_n

When USC sophomore Brittany Carter learned earlier this year she would have a chance to study abroad, she was thrilled. The Blythewood native is a Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism major, so spending the 2017 fall semester at the University of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas was a dream. She spent the summer working various jobs to pay for travel expenses and looked forward to experiencing aspects of her college major first hand.

However, Brittany barely settled in and made friends with other islanders as well as some foreign students before Hurricane Irma threatened on September 6th.

In a travel log September 14, she shares: “Just a little over a week ago, I was sitting on the beach with my friends, gazing at the bright sun reflecting off of the clear Caribbean water. We sat there talking about how amazing it was that we got to live in paradise. It was hard to believe and too good to be true. Then of course life comes by and changes everything. Now I sit in the shelter that I have been stuck in for a week, and when I look out the window I see an island stripped of its green trees and covered in debris.”

IMG_9725
A wall at the Univeristy of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas impaled with a shard of debris.

When Irma’s force hit the 32-square-mile island, Brittany and 149 others were locked in a concrete shelter on campus – 15 to a room. They huddled together all day feeling the building shake and watching through small spaces of boarded windows trees toppling and fragments whipping past. Miraculously, the shelter sustained minor damage, and no students were seriously injured.

Brittany and the others were not allowed to leave the shelter until the next day, and then only to venture 20 feet from the open door. She and the others were immediately struck by how the once beautiful campus was now littered with car parts, glass, trees, and even roofs. Some of the students’ cars were flipped, others missing parts. Classrooms were filled with water, glass, and other debris. Some were missing parts of roofs. A few days later, Brittany was able to venture a little farther and she says that what she saw cannot be conveyed on the television news or in photographs– from the collapsed homes to much, much worse.

For days, she and others tried to find enough cell service to text home. Brittany’s parents, Kelly and Steven, were – understandably – frantic. Brittany says her mother was trying to figure out how to get her daughter off the island.

IMG_9722
Classrooms were filled with water and other debris.

At the same time, fellow St. Thomas native students were distraught about the well-being of family members on other parts of the island. Brittany had to help calm one island student who experienced a panic attack because she was so worried about her family.

Brittany stayed at the shelter for 10 days, relying – like others stranded – on deliveries of water and supplies by volunteer cruise ships. Then a rescue boat took her to St. Croix, which was relatively undamaged by Irma. From there she flew to Puerto Rico, which took a hit from Irma but was yet to be further damaged by Hurricane Maria. At 4 a.m. the next day, she boarded a plane to New York City, and then another to Atlanta, before arriving in Columbia the evening of September 17, missing Hurricane Maria’s destruction of Puerto Rico by three days.

IMG_9816
Brittany, far right, was relieved to finally land at Columbia Metropolitan Airport and hug her brother, Blake, and sister, Allie. 

Even though recovery of her class credits for the fall semester is tenuous because of the devastation at the University of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas, Brittany counts herself fortunate to be safe at home in Blythewood. Surviving Irma’s wrath gave her a new perspective, “I remember watching the news about hurricane damage in the past. I would simply think, “Wow, that’s so sad,” then continue drinking my Starbucks in the comfort of my intact home. Being without power and running water for a period of time definitely helped me realize how victims of natural disasters that I see in the news felt.”

She adds that the hurricane bonded her with fellow students in a way a normal college experience might not have. Some friends plan to return for visits together. She wants to encourage people to visit St. Thomas and support tourism there.

An Evening on the Town

Women unite against breast cancer

By Deena C. Bouknight

image001

Annually, the Lexington Medical Center Foundation hosts Women’s Night Out. This year, October 17 will be a night that begins at 5 p.m. with a Health & Wellness Exhibit and an opportunity to meet Lexington Medical Center physcians. Fun begins with the opening of a silent auction, then dinner at 7 p.m., and a fashion show featuring cancer survivors.

The featured speaker for this year’s event, titled “Fighting Adversity with Faith, Hope, Courage — and a Great Pair of Shoes,” is Jina Moore, Ph.D. A school administrator, Jina was diagnosed with stage II breast cancer at age 45. Reflecting confidence and a positive spirit, Jina danced her way out of the hospital – in a beautiful pair of shoes – each time she completed a radiation treatment. Currently an assistant principal at Spring Hill High School in Chapin, this USC alum will inspire others during the October 17 Women’s Night Out with her personal breast cancer journey.

This event is part of an October-long awarenesss and education initiative for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

There are ways to become a sponsor and be involved. While tickets have already sold out for this year’s event, call (803) 791-2540 for more information.