German churches ask for Christian education at all schools

12-01-2023

Central Europe

Lennart Nijenhuis, CNE.news

A nun at a primary school. Photo AFP, Attila Kisbenedek

Currently, German schools in Lower Saxony offer either Catholic or Protestant religious classes. That should change, some churches in the province think. They plead for the introduction of ‘Christian religious instruction’.

The churches want more cooperation between Protestants and Catholics in religious education, both in general and vocational schools, Idea writes based on a <a href=" press release" target="_blank">https://www.religionsunterricht-in-niedersachsen.de/aktuell/2023/cru-entscheidung) from the Confederation of Protestant Churches in Lower Saxony. They drafted a proposal to present to the provincial authorities this spring.

Changing the content of religious classes is not easy, as current regulations would have to be adapted. Because the courses would have to be taught by both Protestant and Catholic teachers, the ordinances of the dioceses and the church laws of the political authorities would have to change. In addition, teaching materials would need an update.

Disagreement

According to the regional bishop Karl-Hinrich Manzke from Bückeburg, a general Christian religious education will help young people to find their position in religious questions. He thinks that issues of disagreement between churches should be presented as “different ways of being Christian”. That would help students to form a plural identity, he says.

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