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ENGAGING THE CULTURE IN A TIME OF CONFLICT

WHO IS THIS GUY?

ARCHDUKE FRANZ FERDINAND OF AUSTRIA 

In 1889, Franz Ferdinand's life changed dramatically. His cousin Crown Prince Rudolph committed suicide at his hunting lodge. This left Franz Ferdinand's father, Karl Ludwig, as first in line to the throne. Karl Ludwig died of typhoid fever in 1896. Long story short. . .Ferdinand was groomed to succeed to the throne.


IMAGE: Smithsonian Magazine https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/curses-archduke-franz-ferdinand-and-his-astounding-death-car-27381052/

SPINNING OUT OF CONTROL

•Archduke Ferdinand was assassinated (June 28, 1914) 

•His assassination sparked a global conflictAustria declared war on Serbia (July 28, 1914) 

•Russia declared war on Austria to help defend Serbia (July 28, 1914) 

•Germany then declared war on Russia (August 1, 1914) 

•Germany declared war on France (August 3, 1914) 

•France then declared war on Germany (August 3, 1914) 

•Germany declared war on Belgium (August 3, 1914) 

•Britain declared war on Germany (August 4, 1914) 

•Austria declares war on Russia (August 6, 1914)

ESTABLISHING A POSITION

•Because some guy got killed about 20 MILLION people lost their lives in response fighting WWI 

•Why did so many die? Trench warfare (A brutal war tactic)

WHAT IS TRENCH WARFARE?

Establish a position. Dig yourself down into that position. Hide in that position. You NEVER come in sight with your enemy—you just hold firm to your established position and you hurl a lot of ammo the other person’s way.


IMAGE: Shutterstock 

NOTHING TO SHOW FOR IT

•Over the 4 year span of WWI the battle lines DID NOT MOVE MUCH! Therefore, NOT MUCH WAS ACCOMPLISHED during WWI. 


•Geography didn’t change, leaders didn’t change, nothing really happened except a lot of people died.


IMAGE: Shutterstock 

SOMETHING AMAZING HAPPENED!

Christmas Eve 1914—6 months into the Great War, someone stepped into the no mans land without a weapon and declared a ceasefire—the Christmas truce of 1914.

A HIDDEN KEY TO OUR FUTURE

•Even though there was so much they disagreed with each other on (they were at war) on that day they focused on what they had in common--British, Germans and French were all Christians and they wanted to celebrate Christmas.

•This realization caused them to talk, look each other eye to eye, eat together, play together and experience a reprieve, a peace in the midst of the storm with their weapons on the ground. 

RELATIONSHIP CHANGES EVERYTHING

•That night changed them. So much so, the next day when fighting was to resume, they couldn’t pull the trigger on someone they were eating and playing games with the day before.

•The commanding officers had to reassign them to a different front as they couldn’t attack someone that they had relationship with! 

•In the years that follow a new rule was established, “the no fraternization rule” because you probably won’t kill him if you know him.

MODERN DAY TRENCH WARFARE

•Fast forward to today with this backdrop. Social media has created a catalyst that is similar to “trench warfare.” In fact, it is trench warfare. 

•People see or hear of something that they take a stand on. 

•They establish a position 

•They start firing ammo against the other side without ever knowing the full story or the person

A NATION DIVIDED

•Politics 

•Race 

•Gender 

•Class 

•Nationality 

•Religion 

•Marriage 


People are looking for division rather than commonality

THE RELENTLESS ATTACK

•People don't want to change.  They want to only ADD to their pile of ammo so they can continue the relentless attack on people that they ASSUME are against them, and have different views.

•I'm truly concerned.

SOMEONE HAS TO TAKE THE FIRST STEP

•Someone has to take the first step and like the unknown guy from WWI, be bold, courageous and go out into the battlefield with a bold message.

RESOLVE OR RECONCILE

•The OLD way: RESOLVE

•The NEW way: RECONCILE

CHANGING OUR NATION ONE PERSON AT A TIME

"Darkness cannot drive our darkness:  only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive our hate:  only love can do that."  -Martin Luther King, Jr.

REFERENCES

https://www.loc.gov/rr/news/topics/ww1declarations.html 

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/first-world-war-erupts-in-europe

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/the-story-of-the-wwi-christmas-truce-11972213/ 

http://www.history.com/topics/world-war-i/christmas-truce-of-1914 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/retropolis/wp/2017/12/24/the-christmas-truce-miracle-soldiers-put-down-their-guns-to-sing-carols-and-drink-wine/?utm_term=.dab9ad867eb8