Impact and Remembrance
Meitingen, an authentic place of remembrance, and its extensive archive enabled the Christ the King Institute to keep the memory of Max Josef Metzger alive from early on. His many and diverse contacts to peace and Esperanto groups have also assured Metzger’s presence beyond the ecclesiastical domain in unchurched circles’ culture of remembrance to this day.
Articles acknowledging Metzger’s life and work appeared in the church press in 1946, even before his body was moved to Berlin. Matthias Laros published a first collection of his “Gefangenschaftsbriefe” in 1947. Bayerischer Rundfunk produced a 45-minute documentary “Wenn Ihr mich auch für einen Narren haltet‘ – Der Pfarrer Max Josef Metzger” in 1985. Josef Gogl made the film “Spuren eines Märtyrers – Dr. Max Josef Metzger – sein Leben, sein Wirken, sein geistiges Erbe”.
A commemorative plaque honoring Max Josef Metzger was unveiled at the Christkönigshaus in Meiting on April 17, 1961. When the square was redesigned in 1997, a stone with the commemorative plaque was placed in the courtyard of the Christ the King Institute.
Streets have been named after Max Josef Metzger in Augsburg, Brandenburg an der Havel, Freiburg, Magdeburg and Mannheim. Magdeburg additionally has a plaque commemorating him. Berlin Wedding has had a Max-Josef-Metzger-Platz since 1994 and the house at Willdenowstrasse 8 has a plaque commemorating him. Built in 1990, the fellowship hall of St. Fridolin’s in Lörrach is named for Max Josef Metzger. The high school in Meitingen founded in 1968 has borne Metzger’s name since 1988.
A portrait of Max Josef Metzger by Helga Lingnau-Sacks appears among the Catholic victims of National Socialism – even including Dietrich Bonhoeffer in fact– depicted on the stained glass windows of St. John’s Basilica in Berlin Neukölln. In Augsburg, a stele with a bust commemorating Metzer created by Hans Ladner was erected on the cathedral’s south side in October of 1973.
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- © Photo: Karl-Heinz Fix, Augsburg