Priest of Rainbow Church for All gets warning from Cardinal

Blessing ceremony for rainbow couples

Church breaks new ground in Mettmann

Mettmann - Premiere in St. Thomas Morus: For the first time, the Catholic parish invited to a blessing service as a so-called rainbow church. All loving couples of the LGBTQ community were invited.

With the words "dear lovers", Father Ullmann introduces a special service in St Thomas Morus Church. Seated across from him that afternoon are not only worshippers of all ages. Lovers of all sexualities had come to celebrate love in all its diversity together before and with God. It was the first blessing service of this kind and openness for the local congregation, organised by the members of the working group "Rainbow Church for All".

"Today we sing love songs", co-leader Andrea Lauer welcomes the guests at the church entrance. A full car park and numerous good-humoured visitors pointed to a success even before the actual service began. It became clear immediately: Only love counted on this Sunday. The guests found their place in pairs, including probably the greatest proof of love: their children.

Rainbow Church for all

Continuation The blessing service was a premiere, the idea is to be elaborated. "Anyone who would like to collaborate is welcome to do so".

The service was more colourful than usual, and not only in a figurative sense. Colourful scarves in all colours of the rainbow adorned the necks of some choir members behind the altar, even parish priest Ulrike Platzhoff adorned herself with a rainbow. The "Rainbow Project Choir" came together especially for the occasion of the special blessing service and accompanied the afternoon with music pieces around the theme of love. The intercessions and the reading also focused their spotlight on love - "Let love always win", they said.

Church with rainbow colours

The highlight and core of the meeting was a blessing including anointing of the couples and individuals present, conducted by Father Ullmann (blessing) and Ulrike Platzhoff (anointing).

The Blessing One

The Anointing One 

It took a year to implement the special blessing service, Andrea Lauer explained. She is one of the seven members of the Rainbow Church AG and, like the other committed people, has made it her goal to fight discrimination against women and non-heterosexuals in Mettmann and Wülfrath. All the work was worth it: "It was wonderful," praised Alina Maellczarem. She and her husband Michael had travelled all the way from the north of Düsseldorf to attend the service. Guests from Hilden and Düsseldorf-Bilk were also happy to join in the celebration, Michael Meallczarem sees the "Rainbow Church for All" as a pioneer and role model for all churches and wishes for more such projects in the future.

"Last week we held two information events," Andrea Lauer explained. The aim was to raise awareness before the blessing service. However, these three events are not to be the last.

"We still have a lot of plans," the Mettmann woman assures. The next item on the agenda is the procurement of rainbow flags. Because: The church should show its colours. Their area of activity, which so far has only covered Mettmann and Wülfrath, is also to be expanded.

At the blessing service, the Catholic Church was happy to show its colours - with rainbow flags and books on the topic of LGBTQ+, provided by the Mettmann public library, not least to draw attention to its diverse and colourful range.

"Everyone in our working group has experienced exclusion at some point," Andrea Lauer clarified about the very personal motivation behind the initiative. They all want (church) acceptance from anyone and everyone.

In the framework of the discussion forum "Credibility of the Catholic Church", the committed people came together in spring 2022 and started planning their projects and goals.

A parishioner dilated the matter to Rome and the priest has received a warning from Cardinal Woelki this week.



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