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Despite Everything, Their Spirit Lives On

Today marks, what would have been, the 97th birthday Hans Scholl, of one of my favorite heroes of WWII. He was a young medical student in Germany who committed high treason against the Third Reich by writing and distributing anti-Nazi leaflets. He was beheaded at age 24. As most of you readers know, I wrote a historical fiction about Hans and his resistance group called, RESIST. Writing this story was a humbling experience. Would I have had the courage to resist, knowing the consequence would be execution? Their courage and faith is inspiring to say the least. They proved to the world that there still was goodness, humanity, and faith in God abounding in the hearts of people throughout Nazi occupied Europe. They amaze me.

To honor Hans Scholl's birthday, I thought I'd share a few snippets from RESIST.

 Was this what the F├╝hrer meant when he said Germany would be respected by all? How can anyone respect us when we don’t respect human life?   - RESIST

“How strange it is to criticize our hard work in public. I dubbed it ‘ludicrous’ while speaking with Traute the other morning.”
“Perhaps it is ludicrous,” Alex said. “A noble sort of ludicracy.” - RESIST

“Hans, we’re getting soaked!” Gisela squealed through the wind.
“I rather like it.” I ripped off my army cap as another burst of wind wrapped around us.
“What?” She squinted through the rain. She was clutching her hat against her head, and her blue eyes were broad. “Come, the bridge is just a few steps away!” - RESIST

My stomach began to ache from the chortling, but what a good feeling it was to have pain from laughter instead of from misery. - RESIST

 I had my doubts that I would return unharmed, but for a blissful moment, I allowed myself to believe that I would come home and someday be a father like Christl. I would hold my child while looking out the window into a hazy morning fog and remember this moment … this lifetime, and pray my son or daughter never has to see an abhorrent regime come to power. In hindsight, I see that it was only a drifting hope, a future that would never be mine. - RESIST

“Hans and I are on a quest to change the way the Russians perceive Germans as a whole.” Alex continued eyeing the camp.
“So you’re using vodka?” Werner raised a brow.
“Well, not just vodka … but it can’t hurt, right?” I said, stuffing both hands in my pockets.
“No, I suppose not,” Werner shrugged. “I’d be happy to join you on this quest of yours.”
“Because of the vodka?” I studied him with suspicion.
His face broke into a wide grin. “Of course because of the vodka, stupid.” - RESIST

All at once I felt the urge to laugh and love, to raise my voice in a chorus of praise and joy because when I looked at these people, I knew an angel was hovering over them, stronger than all powers of darkness and defeat. Their faith had sustained them through all that life crudely threw at them, testing their resolve and tenacity. - RESIST

She lifted her wine glass. “To the resistance!”
We raised our glasses and clinked them together. “To the resistance!”
“May we all live to see it bloom,” I lifted the glass to my lips and took a long sip.
“You talk dreary! We will live to see it bloom, Hans. Just see if we don’t,” Alex chuckled, propping his feet on the table and sticking his pipe in his mouth. “We are alive and young.”
“Which doesn’t mean anything to the Nazis,” Willi reminded him.
“You all talk rot. We must survive. All of us,” he eyed us, sincerity in his gaze. It was at that moment that I realized he really did expect us all to come through this. I had my doubts.
“Yes. But some things are out of our control, aren’t they Alex?” I lit a cigarette and shook out the match. - RESIST

“The time is coming when we’ll all be faced with the question, ‘Why did you allow this to happen? Why didn’t you do something?’” - RESIST

             Happy birthday, Hans Scholl.  Despite everything, their spirit lives on!
Who is your favorite historical hero?


  1. Oh my goodness! I want to read RESIST so badly! "Publishers and agents, take note!"

    Dear me. Did I just use THREE exclamation marks three sentences in a row? Haha. I never do that. Again, "Publishers and agents, take note! See what excitement this book can generate. I faithfully promise to run to a bookstore and buy a copy upon its release, if only you have sense enough to publish it."

    Okay, getting off my soap box now. I have always been a great admirer of Florence Nightingale.

    1. Awwww, you're the sweetest!! This made me smile! =)

  2. AHHHHHHH This is like :O WOW!
    I cannot type..
    back soon when I can :P

  3. Oh Emily! You have no idea how much these make me want to read Resist!! I definitely want to know more about Hans and all the rest (by the way, Hans is quite handsome :)
    It's incredible how much courage they had, and you illustrate that so well. Awesome, awesome snippets!

    1. Thanks, Mary! I'm glad this makes you want to read more about these amazing people! They were so brave ... they inspire me so much. And yes, Hans is so handsome! =)

  4. I want to read Resist when it is done! You are such a good writer!

  5. This makes me want to cry, I watched the movie Sophie Schol last year, and it was one of the best, and most sad movies I've ever seen. Will you publish this book? Because I really need to read this! These guys are my heroes.

    1. Ooooh the Sophie Scholl movie is an AMAZING film. It made me cry. =(

      I'd like to take the traditional publishing route with RESIST but if that's not God's plan for it, I'll publish it myself. Either way, you'll get to read it! =)

  6. Really good snippets from Resist! :) I love your blog's design, by the way - so nice! And your profile picture is really pretty!

    1. Thank you so much, Micaiah! And thanks for following along! =)

  7. Before I forget in my squeals of how much I liked the snippets and want the book....

    My favorite historical heroes are Louie Zamperini and Russell Allen Phillips - his name is so much fun to write out.

    Now....I SAY THIS A LOT BUT I WANT THIS BOOK!!!!!!!!!!!!! And snippets only make me want it more. I am so exicted for it!!!!!!!!

    1. LOUIE AND PHIL!! They are awesome!! =)

      Thank you so much, Jack! I'm glad you're excited about RESIST!!

  8. Hans and Sophie Scholl are two of my favorite heroes. Another hero of mine is Deitrich Bonhoeffer. It is inspiring to see that though it has been a long time since they paid the ultimate sacrifice, their legacy still lives on strongly.

    Your Resist snippets gave me the chills. I desperately want to read it! I echo hanna-col PUBLISHERS AND EDITORS TAKE NOTE. This sounds like a gem of a story.

    1. Oooh yes, Deitrich Bonhoeffer!! I agree ... it's so inspiring that their legacy still lives on.

      Thank you for the sweet comment, Susanna!!

  9. To be honest, I hadn't ever heard of Hans and Sophie Scholl before I started reading your blog, but now they have become some of my favorite WWII heroes also. I know I've said it before, but I'm going to say it again. I cannot wait until Resist comes out! You are a fabulous writer, Emily, and this book will not only be a beautifully written story, but an amazing testament to these brave, young people. :) <3

  10. What a lovely tribute! I'm very eager to read 'Resist' - your snippets are tantalizing!