Political Catholicism, the Enemy of the German People
While the National Socialist government, despite all efforts of its enemies, continues to build a future for the German people, while its work has succeeded in filling the German people with new hope and joy, winning back for it the world’s respect, while it works hard to heal the wounds inflicted on the German people by a decade of black-red-gold economic mismanagement, an old enemy of the German people is again raising its head:
Understand us carefully here! — We make a basic distinction between religious Catholicism andpolitical Catholicism. We refuse now, as during the System Era, to lump together religious and political Catholicism, particularly since we know that the overwhelming majority of German Catholics have always rejected the evil machinations of Catholic politicians, just as the highest Church dignitaries have done. Pope Leo XIII himself said:
“The misuse of religion for political purposes is the greatest sin.”
National Socialism has proven that it is happy to grant the Church what the Church claims. The National Socialist government concluded a Concordat with the Roman Catholic Church very soon after its takeover of power. It regulated relations between the two, stated rights and duties, and granted the Church wide-ranging privileges. It did this with confidence that the Church would respect the Concordant and give clerics firm guidelines to stay away from any political activity, to be loyal to the National Socialist government, and not to stick their notes in things that are not their concern, and that they do not understand.
National Socialism is not an Enemy of the Roman Catholic Church
Despite the fact that the Roman Catholic clergy took a clear stand against National Socialism in the years prior to the National Socialist takeover, despite the Center Party demagogues in priestly garb who joined with atheistic Marxism in the years before 30 January 1933 to agitate against National Socialism all over the country in the filthiest ways, despite clerics like the notorious Dr. Moenius, who dressed in his priestly raiment carried out infernal agitation against heroic German front soldiers and against Germany in general, without any objection from Church authorities, despite the fact that honored and loyal fighters of the National Socialist movement such as Gauleiter Peter Gemeinder in Frankfurt/M were denied church burial while mass murderers such as Kürten [a German serial killer] received the sacraments without any difficulties, despite the fact that even cardinals and bishops such as Faulhaber and Gföllner accepted and spread the silliest lies and slanders about National Socialism in more or less official statements, even adding to them, the National Socialist government offered the hand of peace to the Roman Catholic Church. No National Socialist has the intention or the wish to unleash a new battle intended to alienate the German Catholic from his faith and Church.
As firm as National Socialism must be in matters of the existence and future of the German people in the political, economic, and cultural spheres, it is tolerant in the area of religion — as long as it is not forced to respond to churchly intolerance and arrogance. As long as the Roman Catholic Church stays within its boundaries, as long as it deals with the religious lives and experiences of its faithful, and as long as it does not interfere in the areas of politics, economics and culture, those areas that the National Socialist government reserves entirely to itself in the interests of the whole of the people, each church and religious group in Germany can conduct its activities unhindered and free of outside influence. We are and remain of the opinion that the honest affirmation to a religion by each German will be respected, as long as it does not conflict with German views of justice, morality, and customs. We think we are in agreement with Pope Leo XIII, who in his encyclical on government of 1 November 1885 wrote:
“The Church does not condemn rulers who, for the sake of securing some greater good, or averting a great evil, tolerate false religions.”
Religion and Politics
To mix religion with politics, however, to use the religious views and sentiments of wide circles of our people for political business, for ungerman purposes, is just as contemptible and indecent as mixing politics or religion with business. Political Catholicism mixes religion and politics, and even worse, religion for it is only a means to an end, a means to gain political power. Before 30 January 1933, the representatives of political Catholicism were the “Center Party” and the “Bavarian People’s Party,” the black partners of that black-red-gold coalition that governed the German people into collapse. The Center and Bavarian People’s Parties were led by influential clerics of the Catholic Church, by clerics who had apparently forgotten that Christ himself said: “My kingdom is not of this world.” Hand in hand with Jewish stock exchange swindlers and Marxist blasphemers, they made Germany into the plaything and joke of the world. These two forces hostile to the people, and therefore also to religion, concealed their treasonous policies under the cloak of religion, bringing Catholicism into disrepute. Like all other organizations that were enemies of the state and people, they were swept away by victorious National Socialism, the embodiment of German thought and feeling.
“The Nation is not the Highest…!”
The ghost of the Center Party is still present today, however, in the form of political Catholicism, which claims the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church in all areas of human life. It is a spirit that attempts to subordinate all government and public forces to the power of the Church. In his bishop’s letter issued shortly before 30 January 1933, Johannes Maria Gföllner, Bishop of Linz, said it clearly:
“The nation is not the highest power, nor may the state be idolized; The highest power for each nation is and remains religion.” (that is, the Catholic Church)
This arrogant statement that clearly proves political Catholicism’s desire for power is further developed by the statement of the Jesuit Lehmkuhlm, a Center Party advisor for many years, in The Voice of Maria Lach (1876, p. 195):
“… it is false, incorrect, even crazy statement stemming from the dirty source of indifference if one proclaims that people have the right to freedom of conscious… The state is obligated to be Catholic.”
The Jesuit Liberatore is even clearer. He demands:
“One may elevate the state as high as he wishes, increase its majesty to the highest, but its subordination to the church remains unquestionable… The civil rulers must be subordinate to the pope. The pope is the supreme judge of civil laws.”
Political Catholicism’s battle for supreme authority in Germany is no recent development. For over a thousand years, political Catholicism has fought with every legal and illegal means to gain political power in Germany.
Treason against People and Nation by Political Catholicism
Past decades provide us with sufficient evidence of the anti-German, anti-people policies of political Catholicism’s representatives. After years of observing Germania, the leading organ of political Catholicism in Germany, Bismarck gave a speech on 28 November 1885 in which he made the following devastating judgment:
“Do we not find that in all the difficulties that the German Reich has abroad, from Spain to Russia, from Poland, from England to the seas around Greece, wherever some difficulty surfaces for Germany, Germania at least rejoices in every failure of German policy, gladly notes it, stresses it, spreads it, criticizes and minimizes any success; in short, do we not see it always on the side of our opponents? Germania does not represent Germany, it never even once represents German interests. That leads us to this conclusion: It opposes the interests of the German Reich wherever it can, from whence it is but a small step that is also taken: Catholic voters are persuaded by it.”
Any later action, any later statement of political Catholicism is suited only to further support this hard, but just judgment of one of the greatest and most far-sighted men in German history. Thus, in the Paderborn Bonifatius pamphlet (1895), there is a conscious rejection of love of fatherland and of patriotic feelings:
“We are first of all Christians, first of all Catholics, and see modern patriotism as a kind of barbarism, a crime against humanity, a sin against brotherly love, a departure from Christianity… We, therefore, leave modern patriotism to our old cousin, the German Michel, whom we are happy to leave in love with patriotic nonsense.”
From such an attitude to intentional, public betrayal of our people and fatherland is only a small step.
Was it not the Catholic and Center Party leader Matthias Erzberger who, during the war, was always there when the willingness of the German people to fight was being sabotaged during its gigantic battle for its existence? Was it not the same Erzberger who joined with the revolutionary Emil Barth to offer unconditional surrender to the victory-drunk enemy powers? Was it not Prelate Kaas, an important dignitary of the Roman Catholic Church, who in 1921 — during the occupation — made agreements with the French, and along with other treasonous statements, said to Tirard, the president of the Rhineland Commission:
“If I become Bishop of Trier, I will work for the independence of the Rhineland.”
Revenge for the Reformation
Is the Center Party man and traitor Pastor Moenius not correct when he triumphantly claims: “Catholicism breaks nationalism’s back!” He is right a thousand times over if he means political Catholicism, for if we consider the history of our people, we must always conclude that political Catholicism sided with the enemies of Germany, that it constantly strove to weaken Germany, to reduce the inner unity of the German people and weaken its right to life, that it joined with Bolshevism in its arrogant blindness. Why is political Catholicism always in bitter enmity against everything German? Why, for example, the dislike of the Bishop of Linz (Gföllner) against “German” nationalism (and only that kind), which he put in these words in his pastoral letter:
“An extreme form of the principle of nationalism that knows and recognizes only national states is at least very questionable, because it cannot be realized without injuring historic rights, without using morally impermissible means.”
The notorious Moenius answers this serious question:
“Since the Reformation, which succeeded only partially, Catholic part of the population is like an arrow in the side of the Protestantism. It is —to the annoyance of the National Socialists — ultramontane, and hinders the building of a national state.”
Furthermore, the Observatore Romano, the official Vatican newspaper, openly admitted in Nr. 118 of 24 May 1923 that German Catholicism
“Both during the World War as well as under the current conditions devotes its strength and organizational ability to eliminating the tragic departure from the Roman Church that occurred 400 years ago.”
What do both of these statements from Catholic circles mean? Pastor Moenius cynically states with his familiar shocking shamelessness that political Catholicism knows no other goal than hindering the formation of a German national state, and the official Vatican organ supports this outrageous statement by praising the fact that during the thunder of battle of the World War, in which Germany was fighting a world of enemies for the sake of its homeland and its possessions, and during which millions of the bravest and most loyal sons of the homeland — whether Catholic or Protestant — gave their lives for people and Reich, during this fiery time of death, Catholicism put its energy, its strength, and its organizational ability to use not to defend the homeland, but rather to carry out a counter-Reformation to regain what the Roman Catholic Church had lost four hundred years ago during the Reformation. It could hardly have found a more suitable time to pursue such special interests! While at the front fathers and sons were dying with faith in Germany’s future, far from the front they were attempting a Roman Catholic counter-Reformation.
The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
This treasonous political Catholicism is once again at work today, eagerly attempting to sow weeds that will destroy the constructive efforts of the National Socialist government. Then there are those familiar practitioners of Jesuit sophistry who hide behind the mask of the innocent citizen who attempt to tear down everything that does not agree 100% with their opinions and theories. We know the phrases that these peculiar politicians always use, phrases of “racist nonsense,” “false nationalism,” “hate-filled enemies of religion,” of the “nationalization of religion,” we know them all — these eternal arguments of political Catholicism, this if and but.
We know that political Catholicism would be much stronger in Germany if it did not face a strong government and a determined, powerful popular movement. Nevertheless, these foxes are at work again today, attempting in more or less hidden ways to cause difficulties for the new state that is fighting a just battle for its existence. The numerous trials of recent months of high-ranking members of Catholic religious orders for currency speculation show to a frightening extent how far they are from popular sentiments, how distant from the people’s community a large part of these so-called Catholics are. They are not interested in what the leadership of the German people offers, in what is vitally necessary in the interests of the whole people, for they know no nation as we understand it, but rather they know only the large state of the Church, which in their view is a state within a state, or the state that they believe should be above all other states.