|year as Rector of the French Congregation. I received my Doctorate
from Princeton in 1961.
I thus owe my presence here in Washington directly to my activity in
the Résistance - and to my German prisoners of war.
A HALF-CENTURY LATER
It is nearly fifty years since most of the events related in this book.
Those who did not live during those times of turmoil, violence, and hard
choices may be reading this volume with a certain nostalgia. They
should not. It was a time of upheaval and uncertainty, of constant
danger. Those of us who are even able to tell the story were the
lucky ones. Others never made it, according to the unfathomable will
of God. It is true that it was an exciting time, and as the war ended
we imagined that life in peacetime would seem pale in comparison.
We were wrong. There are many more exciting things to be done even
now. It is good to remember those days, but not to look for a repeat
performance. War is hell, as General Sherman once said.
Still, I am somehow proud of my war record. I have only recently
realized that, though I was a soldier for half of the war, and an active
member of the Résistance for the other half, I never fired
a shot at the enemy. But I was able to save, with the help of others,
hundreds of lives, hiding the innocent and smuggling Americans through
the nets of the Gestapo. Through reasoning with the enemy and through
the affirmation of the Christian faith I saved more lives than I ever could
have by shooting in anger. The war "fought" by Pierre, Maurice, and
Jean Séguy was a strange war indeed, but it was a war that led to
forgiveness, to faith, and to understanding which bears fruit even today.