If the history of the Catholic Church under National Socialist rule from 1933–1945 is especially well-researched today, both in its broad outlines and its detaila, that is thanks largely to the
works of Father Ludwig Volk S. J. No other scholar of recent church history has expanded and deepened our understanding of this tension-filled and sorrowful subject. Volk’s scholarship
resonates with a superior knowledge of the primary sources, conforms to rigorous scholarly standards, and displays an uncommon awareness of structural connections and individual conditions. Volk
possesses both a special sensitivity to nuance and an ability to present his findings in a differentiated yet also vivid manner.
The essays collected here focus above all on the leadership, on the German bishops, while always referencing the overall context of the Nazi-era church struggle (Kirchenkampf).
They depict the most important problems, way stations, and actors in the Kirchenkampf, as well as the current state of historiography and scholarly lacunae.