The Berlin Fellowship Collection, 1952-2015 consists of physical and digital materials received from the Berlin Fellowship
U.S.A. and Berlin Fellowship, Germany. The records document the activities of an informal group of Presbyterian laypeople
and pastors who maintained an ecumenical visitation ministry with Christians in the German Democratic Republic, 1961-1996.
Formats include subject files, correspondence, photographs, reports, minutes, financial records, clippings, scrapbooks, publications,
audio cassettes, and digital files. Materials were created from 1952-1996.
The “Berlin Fellowship” program ran from as early as 1961 until 1996 within the German Democratic Republic (GDR). The program
had its roots in an American Christian ministry of reconciliation in the years immediately after the Second World War (World
Deputation, 1st Presbyterian Church of Hollywood). The ministry initially focused on work in German youth and reconstruction
camps. During the early years of the Cold War and in the 50’s, during the so-called “Kirchenkampf” (church-state struggle
in the GDR), contact between American and German Christians continued. Reciprocal visits ensued and retreats for church workers,
including those from the GDR, were held in West Berlin.