The “German Christian Faith Movement”

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The faction of the “German Christian Faith Movement” (GDC, soon also called the “German Christians” or DC) in the church under the leadership of Joachim Hossenfelder, a pastor in Berlin, did its utmost as of 1932 to nazify the Protestant church in Prussia”– and, as of 1933, the entire Reich in the wake of the “national awakening”– in keeping with the political “revolution.

They advocated racial and anti-Semitic ideas geared toward the Führerprinzip and aspired with their aims to take the lead in der Protestant church quickly. At their first “national assembly” in Berlin in early April of 1933, they called for the introduction of the “Aryan paragraph” within the Protestant church as well and for the formation of a Reich Church. In keeping with the Führerprinzip, they wanted to see a “Reich Bishop” at their head as the representative of all Protestants. This was actually translated into reality, at least nominally, at their first national synod in Wittenberg in September of 1933.

Historical developments in the church in 1933 made clear however that the German Christians’ influence had already been declining since the summer months as church opposition formed, which soon made its mark as the Confessing Church. Nonetheless, the German Christians remained a permanent fixture in the Protestant church and a counterpart to the Confessing Church until 1945.

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