“It was like a miracle”

Not only the leaders of the Federal Republic of Germany commemorate the fall of the Wall 30 years ago at central commemorations in Berlin. Representatives of the churches also praise the peaceful revolution as a "work of many, who deserve thanks and recognition".

The remaining problems between East and West do not cloud Rainer Maria Cardinal Woelki's great joy at reunification. Towards our site said the Archbishop of Cologne: "These are pictures of indescribable joy. Years of painful separation were overcome completely peacefully."

"It was like a miracle," Woelki said. A death strip had become "in many places a green, living ribbon of life". Even 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, he wished Germany confidence and joy in faith, which gives strength and support for a lifetime.

Archbishop Koch: "Many a wall in people's minds"

According to Berlin's Catholic Archbishop Heiner Koch, the fall of the Berlin Wall is a lasting task for the Germans. "Thirty years ago, the world looked at us, full of amazement and recognition that a revolution was possible without the use of weapons and bloodshed," Koch told rbb radio on Saturday.

"We should understand this as a mission to make everyone who builds walls understand that a world without walls is not only possible, but that it is also a more humane world," the archbishop explained, stressing, "I am not only concerned with walls of stone and barbed wire, but also with many a wall in people's minds."

Bishop Feige: Even after the fall of the wall to stand up for humanity

According to Magdeburg Bishop Gerhard Feige, a responsibility for the present remains. "In the meantime, for many, the freedom that was won is grayer than the dream of it," Feige said on Saturday at the German Division Memorial Marienborn. He spoke at the ecumenical service for a joint festive event of the states of Saxony-Anhalt and Lower Saxony on the occasion of the anniversary of the opening of the border.

"Unexpected challenges have been added," the bishop explained. "Everywhere in Europe, resentment and demarcation are on the rise again, national self-interest is becoming more important than a sense of solidarity, polarization and assaults are taking place, and human dignity is increasingly in danger."Feige asked for God's help for politics and churches "to stand up effectively and spiritually for justice and a humane coexistence".

In the success of the peaceful revolution in the GDR, too, "God himself set a sign and accompanied our actions with his help," Feige said. "Here, neither the predictable nor the purely coincidental has happened. Here was not only the measure full and the time ripe. Nor have people alone been at work here," the bishop emphasized. At the same time, he called for "keeping alive the memory of the many who helped to bring down a system of injustice without violence, to restore the unity of our country and to make Europe more reconciled than ever before.

Ecumenical service in Ratzeburg Cathedral

Northern Church Bishop Kristina Kuhnbaum-Schmidt and Hamburg Archbishop Stefan Hebe paid tribute to the courage of East Germans to stand up against oppression and injustice in the former GDR at a ceremony in Ratzeburg. They called for commitment to a free and peaceful society today as well. Also the Kolping Society declared that one must not slacken in the commitment for peace, freedom, democracy and unity.

"Even 30 years after the fall of the Wall, I am still moved and thrilled by the courage of the citizens of the GDR at the time, with which they brought down an entire state," Hebe said. Of course, the division has also left scars, but that is where today's task begins. "Even after 30 years, we must strive every day for healing and thus for unity," said the archbishop, whose diocese includes Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein and the eastern German state of Mecklenburg.

Bishop Neymeyr: also negative consequences for many GDR citizens

Bishop Ulrich Neymeyr of Erfurt praises the peaceful revolution as a "work of many who deserve thanks and recognition and of which all Germans can and should be justly proud". The fall of the Wall was "also thanks to opposition groups and the many people who had courageously and non-violently demonstrated everywhere in the GDR for a change in conditions, because they did not want to continue living with the Wall, the surveillance by the state security, the ecological disaster and the disastrous economy," Neymeyr said on Saturday in Treffurt-Grobburschla. He spoke in an ecumenical service to a commemorative event of the states of Hesse and Thuringia.

The bishop also highlighted the negative consequences for many GDR citizens. "What is belittlingly called a broken employment biography has in reality been a brutal life experience for many people, the consequences of which they still have to bear. Familiarization with a new, often poorly paid job, many years of unemployment and, as a result, a low pension or torn families today." He expressed "the hope that new borders will not be drawn, but that borders will open, the hope that the mistakes made during reunification can be worked through, and the hope that internal unity in our country will continue to advance".

Bishop Ipolt: Gift of the new freedom

The Bishop of Gorlitz, Wolfgang Ipolt, was Subregen at the Erfurt Seminary in the fall of 1989. Already in his young years as a priest, he emphasized again and again, especially to young people: "We have to believe in the unity of Germany; it cannot be that a state that imprisons its people and in addition prescribes a world view for all of them remains forever."He said this in an interview with the Catholic News Agency.

He himself had really gratefully enjoyed the gift of the new freedom and still shows surprise "that the full churches during the peaceful revolution have awakened the hope in some that people will find their way to us again."

Protestant Bishop Markus Droge of Berlin recalled the role of the church in the peaceful revolution. "We are full of gratitude that the demonstrations at that time remained peaceful. A gift from God, yes. But for this peace, there was sustained learning, work and prayer," Droge said.

The bishop of the Protestant Church of Kurhessen-Waldeck, Beate Hofmann, also said that the further unification of Germany was "a great task that we must not leave to extreme political movements and scatterbrains.". She emphasized: "The request for the strength of prudence is a special concern for me in a time of shouting, indignation and inhuman catching up on politics and commitment."

Kolping Society calls for commitment to freedom and unity

This Saturday, the Kolping Society urges commitment to peace, freedom, democracy and unity. This should "also in the future never be taken for granted and given forever," explained the federal main committee of the Catholic social association on Saturday in Freiburg. It is still meeting in the city in Breisgau until Sunday.

To stand up for the conquered values in state and society remains a permanent task, the committee continued. In East Germany, Kolping families had experienced "serious restrictions in their work and in their radius of action" during National Socialism and the GDR period. In this respect, the Kolping Society observes with concern "that there are again efforts to build walls between people, religions and countries.".

Chapel of Reconciliation at the former Wall strip on Bernauer Strasse

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier paid tribute to the contribution of Eastern European countries to the fall of the Berlin Wall 30 years ago. "Without the courage and the will for freedom of the Poles and Hungarians, the Czechs and Slovaks, the peaceful revolutions in Eastern Europe and German unity would not have been possible," Steinmeier said, according to a speech script circulated in advance Saturday.

"This place and this day commemorate a great historical achievement," the German president said. "They also remind us that today we are united in Europe for our happiness". In the words of German Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU), the 9. November to "resolutely oppose hatred, racism and anti-Semitism". The day was in destiny for Germans and, with the November pogroms of 1938 and the fall of the Wall in 1989, united the "most terrible and happiest moments in German history," Merkel said Saturday at the Chapel of Reconciliation on the former Wall strip on Bernauer Strasse in Berlin. The prayer service there was part of the central commemoration of the 30th anniversary of the founding of the Church. Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Merkel recalled the Protestant Church of Reconciliation, which had been blown up in 1985 at the request of the GDR government and in whose place the Chapel of Reconciliation was built after the fall of the Wall. In the GDR, he said, the church had stood in the death strip, "inaccessible to East and West.". It had stood in the way of the free field of fire. In the demolition had confessed the irreconcilability of the system, Merkel said.

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: