Judge: Dismissing a cantor for surrogacy is illegal


Central Europe


Protest against the use of surrogate mothers. Surrogacy is a controversial practice, as some people see it as human trafficking. Photo AFP, Alain Jocard

German cantor Gerd-Peter Münden was dismissed by his church because he considered getting a child via surrogacy. Now, a court has ruled for the second time that his dismissal was illegal.

According to the state labour court in Hannover, the leadership of the cathedral where Münden worked had not been allowed to fire the cantor immediately upon hearing that he was considering the option of surrogacy. That is reported by Braunschweiger Zeitung.

After the verdict, Münden indicated he wanted to start working as a cantor again. However, the church of Braunschweig already said that any further cooperation was out of question.

Currently, Münden and the church are still in another legal battle, as Münden attempts to get compensation for damage to his reputation. The bishop of the church had said on a broadcast that the cantor treated children as goods, NDR wrote.


Earlier, the regional labour court in Braunschweig had also ruled in Münden's favour. At the time, however, the church went into appeal against this decision.

The dispute between the cantor and the church of Braunschweig started in March last year, NDR writes. At the time, the church dismissed its cathedral after many years of service. The reason was that he and his Colombian husband wanted to have two children via a surrogate mother in Colombia.

Münden, however, claimed that he did not have concrete plans for surrogacy, only considerations. The court went along with that last year. The judges deemed his plans no more than "just a thought process."

Surrogacy is forbidden in Germany. However, the German government is currently exploring whether a (partial) legalisation of the practice is possible.



Subscribe for an update, and receive a documentary and e-book for free.

Choose your subscriptions*

You may subscribe to multiple lists.