Anti-clericalism describes a position of anti-elitist motivation within religious communities that is directed against the clergy . In Christianity , especially in the Protestant and Reformation churches, such a position is often based on arguments that refer to the priesthood of all believers (cf. Ex 19.6 LUT ; 1 Petr 2.9f LUT ).
Outside of religious communities, anti-clericalism is directed against the influence of the clergy on society. In many cases, this criticism led to an extensive separation of church and state or to pronounced secularism .
Church fight, culture fight
The church struggle in a narrower sense describes the conflict between Protestant Christians of the Confessing Church and German Christians from 1933 to around the beginning of the Second World War in 1939. In a broader sense, the epoch of German church history in the time of National Socialism is often referred to as such. In the second case, the term includes
- the struggle of the Nazi state against the Protestant, partly also the Catholic Church and its conventional organizational structures, with the aim of harmonization
- the struggle of National Socialists inside and outside the churches against denominational Christianity , in order to make it compatible with the Nazi ideology through “de-Jewification” and / or to replace it with a “specific” religiosity
- the defensive struggle of Christian groups and particular churches against these efforts.
Critical church historiography disputes that the latter is to be regarded as a general characteristic of that epoch. The attitude of the churches towards the Third Reich is received as an ambivalent attitude “between adaptation and resistance”.
As a synonym for church struggles , the term Kulturkampf has established itself in various contexts :
- for the church struggle in Bismarck's time
- The Kulturkampf in Switzerland was a conflict between the state and the Catholic Church under Pope Pius IX. at the time of the First Vatican Council (1870)
- The Baden Kulturkampf was a conflict between the Catholic Church and the Grand Duchy of Baden in the 1850s.
- Hans-Jürgen Goertz : Anti-clericalism and Reformation. Social historical research . Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1995, ISBN 3-525-33595-4 .
- Selected bibliography on the resistance against National Socialism . Website of the Center for Contemporary History, accessed on March 29, 2016.
- Leonore Siegele-Wenschkewitz : The churches between adaptation and resistance in the Third Reich. in: Barmer Theological Declaration 1934–1984. Luther Verlag, Bielefeld 1984, ISBN 3-7858-0287-0 , pp. 11-29.