Renewed Arrest, No to Certificate of Aryan Descent

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Karl Steinbauer was named permanent assistant pastor of the parish in Ay-Senden in May of 1938. At this time, he was being held in detention again. In a private conversation, he had accused the Nazi state of being hostile toward the church, attacked party dignitaries and repeated a friend’s opinion that Hitler was no longer mentally normal (K. Steinbauer, Zeugnis 3, 46). A teacher had denounced him for this. Steinbauer was consequently arrested on April 7, 1938 while delivering a lecture to the Kulmbach pastoral conference and taken to Bamberg and into protective custody. Steinbauer was charged with violating the Treachery Act but the charges were dropped at the end of May of 1938 because of an amnesty and he was released from detention.

He realized that the Political Police were monitoring his sermons and his mail in Ay-Senden. The mayor, the local Nazi group leader and a teacher had taken notice of Steinbauer immediately because of his refusal to give the Nazi salute (“Heil Hitler”). In the fall, the NSDAP district headquarters requested the revocation of Steinbauer’s certification to teach religion class because he was an incorrigible, spiteful opponent of the present-day state and the party (K. Steinbauer, Zeugnis 3, 190).

He refused to produce the Certificate of Aryan Descent demanded from religion teachers by the Nazi state. In a letter of December 3, 1938, he additionally informed the responsible district administration in Neu-Ulm that he was unable as a Christian and pastor to submit the Certificate of Aryan Descent because he would be prevented by his conscience bound by God’s word.

Steinbauer bluntly stated that, according to Nazi racial laws, the Lord Christ and his Apostles would have to stop at the school doors just like my brethren of non-Aryan ancestry; I would much rather stand before the school doors with my Lord and his Apostles and my brothers in Christ than inside without them (Ich glaube, darum rede ich, 31). As a result, he was prohibited from teaching religion class at the community colleges in Ay-Senden, Weissenhorn and Pfaffenhofen an der Roth.

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  • © Landeskirchliches Archiv Nürnberg, PA Steinbauer 5387/4

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