Bishop Galen Attacks Gestapo for Closing Religious Orders

Bishop Galen Attacks Gestapo for Closing Religious Orders

Clemens August Graf von Galen

Clemens August Graf von Galen, Catholic Bishop of Münster in Westphalia, delivers a sermon in which he attacks the Gestapo for closing religious orders in the city.

Galen describes his duties as a bishop thus:

“None of us is safe — and may he know that he is the most loyal and conscientious of citizens and may he be conscious of his complete innocence — he cannot be sure that he will not some day be deported from his home, deprived of his freedom and locked up in the cellars and concentration camps of the Gestapo.

Justice is the only solid foundation of any state. The right to life, to inviolability, to freedom is an indispensable part of any moral order of society . ...

We demand justice! if this call remains unheard and unanswered, if the reign of Justice is not restored, then our German people and our country — in spite of the heroism of our soldiers and the glorious victories they have won — will perish through an inner rottenness and decay.

I am aware that as bishop, as harbinger and defender of the legal and moral order desired by God, which grants everyone basic rights and liberties not to be invaded by human demands, I am called upon . . . courageously to represent the authority of the law and to brand as an injustice crying to heaven the condemnation of defenseless innocents."

The next day he will send a personal telegram to Adolf Hitler begging him to protect the city against the actions of the Gestapo. Apparently, the "legal and moral order desired by God" does not include basic civil liberties for German society generally or civil equality for Jews.


Gestapo - Documentary

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