This module is part of the Distance Learning Website of the Carmelite Institute of Britain and Ireland (CIBI)


This module is designed to introduce you to the Second World War martyr, Blessed Titus Brandsma OCarm, and to explore the way in which his opposition to Nazism led to his martyrdom. It covers such topics as:

  • his early life and Carmelite vocation;
  • his work as a philosopher and his other activities;
  • his opposition to the Nazi regime in Holland
  • his arrest and imprisonment;
  • his death in Dachau.

The first unit outlines his early years, up to 1909, describing his family background, his education, his Carmelite vocation, his ordination as a priest, and his doctoral studies in philosophy. Unit 2 describes the different activities in which he was involved when he was teaching philosophy at Os and Professor of Philosophy at Nijmegen. The third unit deals with his opposition to Nazism during the 1930s and early 40s. Unit 4 outlines the his interrogation and his imprisonment during the early months of 1942. The last unit describes his journey to Dachau concentration camp, his time there, and his death.

Suggested Bibliography:

The following books provide some helpful background material. They are available from the Carmelite Book Service, Carmelite Priory, Boars Hill, Oxford OX1 5HB, UK, see

Constant Dölle, Encountering God in the Abyss: Titus Brandsma’s Spiritual Journey, The Fiery Arrow Collection 5, translated by John Vriend, Leuven – Paris – Dudley, MA: Peeters, 2002.

Glueckert, Leopold G., OCarm, Titus Brandsma: Friar Against Fascism. Darien, Illinois, Carmelite Press, 1985.

Vanden Heuvel, Anthony, Titus Brandsma. A Modern Martyr for the Truth. Welland, Ontario. The Friends of Titus Brandsma, 1999.

Course Tutor: Patrick Mullins OCarm 

The course is divided into 5 units of input and, at the end, you may complete a Questionnaire, write a Learning Journal, or write an Essay.

Once posted, each unit will be available until the end of the module. The dates on which each of the units, and the other material for this course is available in the calendar in the Student Section.



Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Unit 5



Essay titles


Please click HERE to access the STUDENT SECTION for module start and end dates

From the date corresponding to the relevant Monday (see main web page of, you can click on the relevant unit to access it. Each module includes links to other internet sites of various kinds related to the material being covered.

    Once you have successfully accessed and studied the material in each module and received the Essay titles and the questionnaire, pleace complete either the Questionnaire, write a Learning Journal, or write an Essay based on one of the Essay titles given, and return it to to the course administrator: [email protected]


Copyright: CIBI holds the copyright to this material (text, graphic and other); distribution to family or friends, or publication (including on internet) of any part of the material is not permitted without the CIBI ’s explicit written permission.