A military chaplain in World War I, Michael von Faulhaber will be the first clergyman to win the Iron Cross in combat for his support of troops on the Western Front. Never a Nazi himself, Faulhaber will nevertheless become an ardent nationalist who promotes peaceful cooperation with what he sees as the lawful government in Germany.
Faulhaber never extends the same consideration to the Weimar Republic, however. At the 1922 national Catholic conference in Munich, Faulhaber describes the Weimar Republic as a "perjury and betrayal" because it is created out of the dissolution of the monarchist government and "a heresy that cannot be brought into line with the Christian worldview" because it dares to separate church from state. Comparing democracy to monarchy, he says:
"Kings by the grace of the people have no mercy for the people, and where the people are their own king [are sovereign], sooner or later they will also become their own gravediggers."