Pastors and Pluralism in Wurttemberg, 1918-1933

Pastors and Pluralism in Wurttemberg, 1918-1933

Copyright Date: 1987
Pages: 408
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  • Book Info
    Pastors and Pluralism in Wurttemberg, 1918-1933
    Book Description:

    Moving beyond earlier explanations of why the Protestant church opposed the Weimar Republic, David Diephouse emphasizes the social role of the church rather than its direct political activity.

    Originally published in 1987.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5879-8
    Subjects: Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-xii)
    (pp. xiii-2)
    (pp. 3-25)

    In November 1918, imperial Germany collapsed in the trenches of the Western Front. Even before hostilities ceased, the streets of most major cities belonged to the revolution; by November 9, with the Wittelsbachs already forcibly deposed in Bavaria, Philipp Scheidemann had impulsively declared a republic in Berlin, and the kaiser was seeking refuge across the border in Holland. In Stuttgart, King Wilhelm II of Württemberg, who had often declared that his person should never become an obstacle to his subjects’ welfare, abdicated the throne and motored off into exile at a royal hunting lodge near the old university town of...

  6. ONE Church, State, and Society in Württemberg before 1918
    (pp. 26-52)

    The Evangelical-Lutheran church in Württemberg ranked fourth in size among German churches after World War I; besides the vast Prussian church, only those in Saxony and Hannover were larger. According to the census of 1925, it numbered some 1,722,189 nominal members, or two-thirds of the total Württemberg population, a proportion of Protestants nearly identical to that in Germany as a whole.¹ This demographic coincidence does not mean, of course, that generalizations about German Protestantism can be applied without qualification to Württemberg. Like many of the territorial churches, and perhaps more than most, the Württemberg church reflected peculiar local social and...

  7. TWO Beyond Throne and Altar
    (pp. 53-100)

    By the early 1920s, it was clear even to clerical doomsayers that, as yearbook editor Johannes Schneider put it in 1921, the territorial church system had “weathered the first wild storm of the revolution era.” “State props have fallen; the churches still stand,” wrote Schneider—proof positive that official Protestantism was “far less a state church than [critics] assumed.”¹ The latter statement was arguably more notable for triumphalism than for strict accuracy. If the churches indeed lost a powerful prop in the November Revolution, it was the prop of monarchy rather than the state. Despite formal disestablishment, and although separation...

  8. THREE Democracy and the Limits of Church Reform
    (pp. 101-159)

    Relations with the state after 1918 bore witness to an inherent duality in churchmen’s institutional orientation, a duality that distinguished them from most other vocational and interest groups as well as from the civil and military officialdom to which they have often been compared. To a significant extent the church remained bothAnstaltandVerein,both “pastors’ church” and “people’s church,” both public bureaucracy and voluntary association. Before the November Revolution, precedent and practice had strongly favored the bureaucratic orientation. Yet the church was also held to be in some sense a lay enterprise, grounded in the authentic Lutheran principle...

  9. FOUR Clergy and the Classroom
    (pp. 160-208)

    If churchmen could not appeal unreservedly to either the authority of a benevolent state or the volition of a committed mass membership, how could they hope to effectuate the Volkskirche ideal of an all-embracing moral community? The constitutional and ecclesiastical settlements of the immediate postwar period failed to provide churchmen with any new formula in terms of which to define their place and purpose. As a result, they found themselves forced to rely more heavily than before on what might be termed an auxiliary legitimation of Volkskirche claims: on activities, that is to say, that both asserted and invoked the...

  10. FIVE The Social Volkskirche
    (pp. 209-257)

    The concern for auxiliary legitimation reflected in churchmen’s approach to the schools also found expression in their growing eagerness to assume an active social role. It was an article of faith that the Volkskirche must be a “social” church, a church of the deed as well as of the Word. This social project had both preceptorial and diaconal dimensions: churchmen sought to uphold the marks of a Christian moral order, both public and private, while also providing the proverbial cup of cold water to society’s unfortunates. Diaconal imperatives were, of course, as old as the church itself. Whether carried on...

  11. SIX Politics and Pastoral Responsibility
    (pp. 258-309)

    In 1927 the national church congress in Königsberg adopted a widely publicized proclamation on the responsibilities of Christian citizenship. ThePatriotic Message(Vaterländische Kundgebung) reasserted the church’s familiar claim to stand “above parties,” and from the vantage point of this self-imputed neutrality it called upon loyal Protestants to fulfill their duties as citizens, enjoining them always to “be subject to the state for the sake of God’s Word.” Like its predecessor, theSoziale Botschaftof 1924, the Königsberg statement originated in the DEKA’S social committee. Its bland generalities expressed theVernunftrepub-likanersentiments of Jakob Schoell and like-minded members of the...

  12. SEVEN Toward National Renewal
    (pp. 310-355)

    The last years of the decade were a time of comparative equilibrium in Württemberg church life. No new controversy emerged to strain relations between theological factions. No issue became weighty enough to set pastors against either each other or their superiors. Relations with government officials were invariably correct, if not cordial. The work of the Volksbund and other church agencies suggested that churchmen were gradually coming to accept, if hardly to affirm, their ambiguous position between a state to which they retained no organic connection and a social order from which they sometimes felt threatened with extrusion.

    But if an...

    (pp. 356-370)

    On january 30, 1933, weeks of back-room maneuvering ended with the appointment of Adolf Hitler as chancellor in a coalition cabinet of the right. For this study to conclude with-out consideration of theMachtergreifungand its consequences may appear somewhat arbitrary, especially in view of the enthusiasm with which most churchmen moved to embrace the new order. Indeed, the sense of resignation and passivity previously so prevalent in church circles gave way, almost literally overnight, to a new hope that the day of national and spiritual renewal might finally be at hand. For conservatives such as Theophil Wurm, Hitler’s appointment...

    (pp. 371-380)
  15. INDEX
    (pp. 381-393)
  16. Back Matter
    (pp. 394-394)