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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Supporter of Islamic teaching to be head of German Catholic laity

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hr-online Artikel drucken: Brockmann bald Stimme der Katholiken?

State Secretary Heinz Wilhelm Brockmann (CDU) who wants to introduce into the schools in Hessen lessons about Islam, could soon speak for millions of German Catholics. H3 confirms his candidature for the leadership of the lay group, ZDK to hr-online.

Central Committee of German Catholics
He will be a candidate on 8 May in Berlin in the election for the office of the President of the Central Committee of German Catholics (ZDK), Brockmann said on Wednesday to hr-online. There would not be an opposing candidate, according to the ZDK. Brockmann’s election is therefore likely (Cathcon- so much for democracy).

The ZDK is the organization of the laity in the Catholic Church. It has held, inter alia, the well-known Catholics Conferences. The 61 years old Brockmann says that in the next few years, the question will be above all: "How do we want as the Catholic Church in Germany in the future?" He had been invited to stand by a number of people.

Candidacy supported by Regional Prime Minister Koch
The 61-year-old Brockmann has been eight years Vice President of the ZDK. In Hessen, the CDU member has been since February Secretary of State in the Ministry of Culture. Minister Dorothea Henzler (FDP) had taken him from the Lower Saxony Ministry of Culture, not least because he had pushed for the introduction of controversial Islamic teaching. (Cathcon- he would not be senior enough to stand unless he had got this role- which depended on his support for Islamic teaching- but guess he really supports it himself)

Brockmann said that the voluntary work as ZDK President and his work as Secretary of State "can be put under the same hat." His candidacy was agreed with Henzler and Prime Minister Roland Koch (CDU) i. Both had no objection.

Tension over the policy of the regional government
Some of exchanges of hostility in the regional government could give rise to tensions should Brockmann become ZDK president. Thus the critic in the CDU of of the Islamic teaching, the Christian conservative CDU MP Hans-Jürgen Irmer, would argue at once against the most highly placed Catholic layman. In February, Brockmann defended Islamic lessons with the comment that it is not written in the Constitution that religious education is only provided for Christian children

Brockmann repeated to hr-online, that it was a question of whether 60,000 Muslim children in Hessen had the same opportunity to have religious education. His post in the ZDK plays no role in this. The matter of Islamic teaching is based on the coalition agreement of the CDU and FDP (Cathcon-Christian Democract and Liberal coalition partners in Hessen)

Co-founder of Donum Vitae
Brockmann’s political origins are seen as conservative. He also jointly founded for pregnant women Donum Vitae for Pope John Paul II, the way around for the church from forced guidance. Observers believe that not all bishops would be pleased about his choice. Brockmann said that he had in recent years established discussions on a trustworthy basis with the bishops.

According to media reports, Brock's candidacy,is especially supported by Diocesan Councils. He should also have numerous critics. Brockmann said, the ZDK is the largest Catholic lay organization in the world. It was also important that the Catholics participated in civil society - and the topics ranged from climate and educational policy to ethical behavior in their own investing. He thinks it depends "what we want to do and need to do."
(Cathcon- no surprise no mention that the laity might be concerned about the Passion of Our Lord)

Studies at the University of Frankfurt
Brockmann studied in Frankfurt, theology, philosophy and politics. Later he worked as a journalist and as a teacher. In 1986, he took up a post in the Saxony Ministry of Culture, where he was Department Head until the beginning of 2009, inter alia, responsiblefor "educational innovation and churches".

Cathcon- he has also written a book about the Church in modern society and one about Church work at the grass roots in Brasil- doubtless a lover of liberation theology.
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