Katholizismus und Nation – Vor 150 Jahren und heute


Catholicism and Nation – 150 Years Ago and Today. There is a contrast between the universal religion of Catholicism and the loyalty of citizens to their nations, although this relationship was seldom antagonistic. With the founding of the German Empire, the Catholics became a minority and in the «Kulturkampf» they got in a strong conflict with the mostly Protestant state. With the mitigation of this conflict, the Catholics integrated themselves as loyalists to the state and the German nation. In the First World War, the differences between Catholic and Protestant patriotism nearly disappeared. After the catastrophe of the «Third Reich» and the Second World War, the German Catholics became skeptical about the concept of the nation. The Popes reminded them that the nation was still a value sui generis. Paradoxically, recent tendencies to separate the German Catholic Church from the universal Church contradict the enmity of German Catholic officials to nationalism.

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