Joachim Meisner

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Joachim Cardinal Meisner (2014)
Coat of arms of Cardinal Meisner as Archbishop of Cologne

Joachim Cardinal Meisner (born December 25, 1933 in Breslau , Lower Silesia , † July 5, 2017 in Bad Füssing , Lower Bavaria ) was a German theologian and archbishop of the Roman Catholic Church .

From 1980 to 1989 he was Bishop of Berlin and from 1982 to 1989 Chairman of the Berlin Bishops' Conference . In 1983 he became a cardinal . From 1989 to 2014 Meisner was Archbishop of Cologne and Metropolitan of the Church Province of Cologne .


Origin and early career

Joachim Meisner was born in the Wroclaw district of Deutsch Lissa (now Polish: Leśnica ) and was baptized in the local St. Hedwig's Church. He grew up with three brothers in a strongly Catholic environment.

After being expelled from Silesia in 1945 and his father's death in the same year, Meisner lived in Körner in Thuringia . After completing an apprenticeship as a banker , Meisner entered the Norbertinum seminar for late professions in Magdeburg in 1951 , where he initially took his Abitur . From 1959 to 1962 he studied philosophy and theology in Erfurt and was there on April 8, 1962 deacon and on December 22, 1962 the Fulda Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Freusberg for priests ordained . He was a chaplain in Heiligenstadt and Erfurt, then rector of the Erfurt Caritas Association .

In 1969, he was from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome to Dr. theol. PhD .

Bishop Joachim Meisner (right) with the GDR State Council Chairman Erich Honecker , 1987

Auxiliary Bishop in Erfurt

On March 17, 1975 he was appointed titular bishop of Vina and auxiliary bishop of the Episcopal Office of Erfurt-Meiningen and consecrated bishop on May 17, 1975 by the apostolic administrator of Erfurt Hugo Aufderbeck . Co- consecrators were the bishops Johannes Braun and Georg Weinhold . Meisner's motto was Spes nostra firma est pro vobis (“Our hope for you is certain”, shortened to Spes nostra firma after being promoted to cardinal ) and comes from 2 Corinthians ( 2 Cor 1.7  EU ).

The episcopal office included the Eichsfeld , which is a Catholic enclave within the traditionally Protestant and, since GDR times, atheistic religious landscape. There Meisner found a similarly intense Catholic community life as in his Silesian homeland.

Bishop of Berlin

Joachim Meisner, right, with (from left) Bishop Karl Lehmann , Bishop Gerhard Schaffran and Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger at the Dresden Catholic Meeting in 1987

On April 22, 1980, Pope John Paul II , whom he had known personally for years, appointed him Bishop of Berlin . He was introduced to this office on May 17, 1980. The diocese of Berlin, with its eastern and western parts, was one of the most difficult European dioceses in terms of ecclesiastical politics at the time of the division of Germany . In 1984, Bishop Meisner consecrated the newly built Karmel Regina Martyrum in Berlin .

From 1982 to 1989 Meisner chaired the Berlin Bishops' Conference . In this function, Meisner organized the first and only GDR-wide Catholic meeting in 1987, which was a great success with over 100,000 participants (with fewer than 800,000 Catholics in the GDR). At the closing service, Meisner said with allusion to the omnipresent Soviet stars (in the presence of state representatives) that "... the Christians in our country do not want to follow any other star ... than that of Bethlehem."

On February 2, 1983, John Paul II accepted him as a cardinal priest with the titular church of Santa Pudenziana in the college of cardinals . Cardinal Meisner took part in the 2005 conclave , in which Benedict XVI. was elected, and at the 2013 Conclave in which Francis was elected.

Archbishop of Cologne

Appointment controversy

After the death of Cardinal Joseph Höffner in 1987, the office of Archbishop of Cologne had to be filled again. Traditionally, the Cologne cathedral chapter has had the right to elect the archbishop since 1200. According to the State Church Treaty between the Holy See and the Free State of Prussia from 1929, the chapter has to submit a list of "canonically suitable candidates" to the Bishops' Congregation in Rome in order to ensure the participation of the Roman Curia and the Pope. The bishops can also send proposals to Rome on the territory of the former Prussia.

In accordance with the provisions of the Prussian Concordat , the Pope puts together a three-party proposal (Terna), from which the cathedral chapter then has to choose a candidate, “taking these lists into account”. Of course, the Pope is then not bound by the proposals submitted. Due to the three-party proposal from Rome, the Cologne cathedral chapter failed to reach an agreement, since according to the statutes of the Cologne cathedral chapter an absolute majority of the members of the chapter had to vote for a new archbishop. After cathedral provost Bernard Henrichs had informed the papal nuncio that the election had not taken place, Rome took the position of the devolution law provided for in canon law , which states that the decision goes to the next higher level if a lower level does not come to a decision.

The Holy See also took this point of view towards the concordat partners, the states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate. The Prime Ministers Johannes Rau and Bernhard Vogel , on the other hand, were of the opinion that the Prussian Concordat prescribes an election and that the international treaty takes precedence over the Church's own law. It was only after pressure from the Prime Minister that the Vatican gave in and had the chapter chosen again.

To this end, Pope John Paul II changed the Cologne election regulations in accordance with the rules of general church law , according to which only a relative majority of the votes was required in the third ballot. With six votes in favor with ten abstentions, Meisner was finally elected and on December 20, 1988 was appointed Archbishop of Cologne by the Pope. He was inducted into his new office on February 12, 1989.

Theologians from all over Germany protested against the Pope's actions; among other things with the Cologne declaration “Against incapacitation - for open catholicity”. In addition, it was criticized in Catholic circles in Cologne that Meisner did not fit into the traditionally liberal climate of so-called "Rhenish Catholicism" and had a mentality that was too strange for the Cologne local church .

Cardinal Meisner at the World Youth Day 2005

World Youth Day and Pope's visit

An important event in his tenure as Archbishop of Cologne was Meisner's role as host of the 20th Catholic World Youth Day . After discussing Cologne as a World Youth Day city with Pope John Paul II since 1997, it was finally too late for John Paul II, who died in April 2005, when it came to realization after several postponements in 2005. The new Pope Benedict XVI. however, shortly after his election, he agreed to attend.

Resignation and retirement

After his age-related resignation in November 2008, which he offered to the Pope in accordance with canon law upon reaching the age of 75, by Benedict XVI. was rejected, Meisner renewed the resignation on his 80th birthday. Pope Francis accepted this on February 28, 2014. Meisner, who was Archbishop of Cologne for 25 years, was thus retired . According to his own information, Meisner wanted to continue living in Cologne and work in pastoral care for old priests and religious.

Cardinal Meisner retired as Archbishop of Cologne on March 9, 2014 with a festive mass in Cologne Cathedral. Numerous personalities from church and political life attended the service. Among them were Cardinals Reinhard Marx , Stanisław Dziwisz and the Apostolic Nuncio , Archbishop Nikola Eterović . The Evangelical Church in Germany was represented by the council chairman Nikolaus Schneider . Prime Minister Hannelore Kraft was also present. Meisner last lived in downtown Cologne.

Death and burial

Joachim Meisner died on July 5, 2017 while on vacation in Bad Füssing, Lower Bavaria . After lying in state in Cologne's Basilica St. Gereon the body was in a July 15 procession to the cathedral transferred where Rainer Maria Cardinal Woelki concelebrated by the Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Nikola Eterovic , the chairman of the German Bishops' Conference, Reinhard Cardinal Marx , as well as other high-ranking clergy presided over the exequies . Archbishop Cardinal Péter Erdő from Budapest delivered the sermon . The nuncio read a message from Pope Francis ; Archbishop Georg Gänswein also wore a tribute to Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. in front. At the end of the celebration, the coffin was carried to the high choir and from there lowered through an opening into the bishop's crypt, where Joachim Meisner was buried in a niche next to Cardinal Frings . The well-known feminist Alice Schwarzer was also present at his funeral . After the funeral, she talked about her friendship with Meisner in an interview with the Catholic TV station EWTN .


Meisner's cardinal ring and his private baroque chalice, which had stood on the coffin during the funeral ceremony, were presented to the provost of St. Hedwig's Cathedral in Berlin in May 2018 .


Meisner's theological and political positions and criticism of them

Meisner was criticized by some politicians and journalists for his theological and political positions and how he presented them. The Cologne member of the Bundestag Volker Beck (Greens) and Cologne City Councilor Claus Ludwig (Left) called him a hate preacher or said that he was active as one.

The Cologne Regional Court issued an injunction against this at the request of the Archdiocese . Beck brought negative declaratory action before the Berlin Regional Court . The proceedings ended with an out-of-court settlement between the two parties.

Ecumenical and interreligious dialogue

In 2003 the German Bishops' Conference published its "Guidelines for Multi-Religious Celebrations by Christians, Jews and Muslims". In 2006 Cardinal Meisner issued a guideline that forbade such celebrations in Catholic schools on the grounds that the non-Christian religion's image of God is not identical with the Trinitarian understanding of God. Multi-religious celebrations of schoolchildren are therefore not appropriate due to the not yet fully developed faith of young people. Meisner was criticized at the time for this approach; Hamburg's auxiliary bishop Jaschke made it clear that Meisner did not violate the guidelines of the bishops' conference. The title and content of the guidelines have been revised.

In the dispute over the construction of a large mosque in Cologne-Ehrenfeld , Cardinal Meisner expressed understanding for the plans of the Muslims. From a traditional Islamic point of view, attempts to gradually create more and more space for Sharia in our latitudes are legitimate and understandable; however, a democratic society would have to counter this. He considered it impossible for Muslims to hold joint events with Christians in their churches. The test for the credibility of the DİTİB , which is building the large mosque in Cologne, is the reaction in Turkey: Whether smaller church buildings are approved there and whether Turks in Turkey defend the religious freedom of Christians there.

Meisner sharply criticized the ecumenical Kirchentag 2003 in Berlin , because it had caused a "great disorientation and confusion".

Family and sexuality

Meisner criticized several times in drastic language the equality of registered civil partnerships with heterosexual marriage . For this he has been criticized many times. In an article for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on August 1, 2009, he spoke out against an adoption right for homosexual couples .

In March 2007, Meisner, like the then Augsburg Bishop Walter Mixa, criticized the family policy of the Federal Government under Family Minister Ursula von der Leyen as “check book policy” and called for a change in mentality . He mentioned the lower birth rate in the eastern federal states of Germany at that time compared to the western federal states, where significantly more crèche places were available.

At the Epiphany sermon on January 6, 2005, Meisner indicated a parallel between abortion and the Holocaust of the Jewish people:

"It is significant: wherever people cannot be put into perspective and narrowed down, there they always fail to live: first Herod , who had the children of Bethlehem killed, then Hitler and Stalin , among others , who had millions of people destroyed, and today, in our time, unborn children are killed millions of times. Abortion and euthanasia are the consequences of this arrogant rebellion against God. These are not social problems, but theological ones. This is where the first commandment comes into play: 'You shall not have any foreign gods next to me', i.e. H. you should not make yourself a god who assumes the right of disposal over his own body and over the life of others. 'The light shines into the darkness' (Jn 1,5), that is not a harmless event. Either I take it up, then I walk through the world more enlightened or I close myself to it and become even darker than before. "

While the Forum of German Catholics stated that Meisner was not playing down or diminishing the crimes of the National Socialists against the Jews in any way, but instead "emphatically brought to light the millions of injustices involved in the murder of people", Meisner's address brought the charge of playing down the Holocaust. He then partially withdrew his statement publicly.

Because of its position on the abortion legislation, Meisner asked the CDU to dispense with the "C" in its party abbreviation, as it was no longer a Christian party.

The lecturer of the Pontifical Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Neuthomist David Berger , who qualified as a professor in Lublin , was withdrawn from Meisner's ecclesiastical license to teach Catholic religious instruction on the grounds that his trust in Berger's doctrine and conduct of life with the moral and legal norms of the church had been destroyed. Berger had come out as homosexual and published a book called Der Heilige Schein .

On January 16, 2013 it was reported that a woman who had apparently been raped had been turned away and not treated in two hospitals operated by the Catholic Cellites of St. Mary because the doctors were unable to use the morning-after pill “To clarify, which cannot be prescribed in Catholic hospitals. After the public discussion that followed, Cardinal Meisner responded on January 22nd with an apology to the victim, but spoke out against the morning-after pill, as the Church took a clear position on the absolute protection of life. At the end of January he revised his previous position:

"If, after a rape, a preparation whose principle of action is the prevention of conception is used with the intention of preventing fertilization, then in my opinion this is justifiable."

- Declaration of January 31, 2013

In contrast to the use of a pill that prevents the fertilization of an egg cell in this way, the administration of an agent to prevent nidation remains forbidden as an abortion by the Catholics.

The “ Richter Window ” in Cologne Cathedral

Cult and culture

Cardinal Meisner (with red biretta ) on Roncalliplatz after the celebration of a pontifical high mass in Cologne Cathedral on the occasion of his 75th birthday

In September 2007, in a speech at the opening of the new Archbishop's Diocesan Museum , Meisner stated that he saw culture as linked to worship:

“Let's not forget that there is an inalienable connection between culture and cult. Where culture is decoupled from cult, from worship, cult solidifies in ritualism and culture degenerates. She is losing her center. "

This sentence was criticized because of the conceptual proximity to the National Socialist idiom of " degenerate art ", but also because of the content-related statements by parties, the media and the Central Committee of German Catholics . The Archdiocese of Cologne rejected the criticism. The Tagesanzeiger and the Central Council of Jews called him a “notorious intellectual arsonist”.

Shortly before that, Meisner had caused a sensation when he disapproved of the new south transept windows of Cologne Cathedral commissioned by the High Metropolitan, Cathedral and Cathedral Chapters in Cologne , abstracted by the artist Gerhard Richter and inaugurated on August 25, 2007 . This does not clearly reflect the Catholic-Christian faith. “The window doesn't fit into the cathedral. It fits more in a mosque or a house of prayer, ”said the Archbishop.

Comparison of Richard Dawkins' with National Socialists

In his 2009 All Saints Sermon, Meisner drew parallels between the views of the biologist and atheist Richard Dawkins and the National Socialists by saying:

“Similar to how the National Socialists once saw the individual human being primarily only the bearer of the genetic material of his race, the forerunner of the new godless, the Englishman Richard Dawkins, defines human beings as the 'packaging of the only important genes', the preservation of which is the primary purpose of our existence be."

Opus Dei

Joachim Meisner was considered a supporter of Opus Dei . According to a sermon by Meisner on January 19, 2002, the cathedral in Cologne is “almost an Escrivá memorial”. He added literally:

“[] I am deeply grateful to my predecessors, Cardinal Joseph Frings and Cardinal Joseph Höffner, for bringing the seeds that were then sown here to our Archdiocese of Cologne, as Opus Dei, the work of Escrivá, was able to gain a foothold in our home . His companions have become an indispensable part of the life and work of our archdiocese and our fatherland. "

- Joachim Meisner, January 19, 2002 in Cologne.

According to press reports, Meisner actively promoted the position of Opus Dei in his Cologne environment through his personnel policy. In late autumn 2006, for example, together with his vicar general Dominik Schwaderlapp, he pushed for the replacement of the archbishopric's long-time press spokesman, Manfred Becker-Huberti , with the journalist Stephan Georg Schmidt, who is a member of Opus Dei. The new press spokesman also became editor-in-chief of the Cologne church newspaper . Meisner responded to the criticism expressed within the church at this double occupation with the statement that the archbishopric expects "synergy effects" for press and public relations work. In spring 2010 Schmidt gave up his offices in quick succession; his successor as head of the press office was the former deputy press spokesman Christoph Heckeley, who is not considered to be related to Opus Dei.

Work outside the Archdiocese of Cologne

Joachim Meisner was chairman of the liturgy commission of the German Bishops' Conference for almost 25 years from 1989 until his retirement in 2014.

Cardinal Meisner took part in several synods in the Vatican that Pope John Paul II convened. At the 1999 Synod he was President of the European Delegation. He also traveled to Finland in 2005 for the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the Helsinki diocese .

The Cardinal Meisner Foundation for Eastern and Southern Europe, founded in 2013, is intended to support the formation of priests in Eastern and Southern Europe.

Internal church conflicts

As Archbishop of Cologne

In 2013 Meisner forbade the diocesan priest and non-fiction author Hermann-Josef Frisch, after his conflict with critics in the Overath Parish Association , to resume his work as pastor there after a sabbatical year that began in September 2012 . Frisch then retired in September 2013 after refusing a transfer to a post outside Overath.

On the papal letter Amoris laetitia

In mid-September 2016, Cardinal Meisner, together with Cardinals Carlo Caffarra , Walter Brandmüller and Raymond Leo Burke , addressed the letter Seeking clarity: a request to untie the knots in 'Amoris Laetitia' to Pope Francis and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith with five "doubts" ( dubia) and the desire for clarifications on the papal letter Amoris laetitia . The first of these Dubia dealt with the question of whether it was permissible through Amoris Laetitia to admit a civilly divorced person to receive Holy Communion , although the marriage was still going on in the eyes of the Church. On November 14, 2016, the cardinals made the letter public because the Pope had not responded, which was understood as an invitation to the discourse. At the end of November 2016, the dean of the Roman Rota , Pio Vito Pinto , raised allegations against the four cardinals who had "caused a serious scandal".


Roman Curia

German Bishops' Conference

  • Permanent Council (until February 28, 2014)
  • Liturgy Commission (until February 28, 2014)
  • World Church Commission (until February 28, 2014)


honors and awards

Honorary doctorates

Honorary citizenships



  • Since 2014 a square in the municipality of Hundeshagen in the Thuringian district of Eichsfeld has been called "Kardinal-Meisner-Platz". As was common in the villages of Eichsfeld during the GDR, the citizens of Hundeshagen helped finance the young theology student's studies. Meisner has always remained closely connected to Hundeshagen and the Eichsfeld.
  • In 2019 the square in front of the St. Maria Magdalena chapel at the Melaten cemetery in Cologne was named Kardinal-Meisner-Platz. Cardinal Meisner had campaigned for this chapel not to be profaned.


  • Witness through the ages. On the 70th anniversary of the death of the blessed Berlin Provost Bernhard Lichtenberg . In: Barbara Stühlmeyer , Ludger Stühlmeyer : Bernhard Lichtenberg. I will follow my conscience. Topos plus Verlagsgemeinschaft, Kevelaer 2013, ISBN 978-3-8367-0835-7 , pp. 75-82.
  • He was my friend. A testimony up close. Pattloch-Verlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-629-02156-4 .
  • Edith Stein - Teresia Benedicta a Cruce. Jewish Christian woman and Christian Jew woman. Butzon & Bercker, 2006, ISBN 3-7666-0877-0 (as editor)
  • Glad in the grace of God. Bachem, 2005, ISBN 3-7616-1946-4 .
  • Safe in God. Day and night prayers. 6th edition, Adamas-Verlag, Cologne 2005, ISBN 3-937626-02-6 .
  • See with the heart. Chances and Mission of the Church at the Beginning of the Third Millennium. MM Verlag, Aachen 2000, ISBN 3-928272-12-8 .
  • From now on all generations will call me blessed. Butzon & Bercker, 1999, ISBN 3-7666-0202-0 .
  • Holy Mass. Pattloch-Verlag, Augsburg 1997, ISBN 3-629-00111-4 (together with Hans-Günther Kaufmann).
  • Traces of God on our ways. Everyday life as a meeting place between man and God. More-Verlag, Hildesheim / Berlin 1998, ISBN 3-87554-263-0 .
  • Against the desensitization of faith. Thoughts on the re-evangelization of Europe. 2nd edition, Styria, Graz 1991, ISBN 3-222-11965-1 .
  • May our hope strengthen you. Styria Pichler, Graz 1989, ISBN 3-7990-5550-9 .
  • Be as God intended us to be! Reflections on Mary. Bernward-Verlag, Berlin / Hildesheim 1988, ISBN 3-87065-452-X .
  • Post-Reformation Catholic forms of piety in Erfurt (= Erfurt theological studies, vol. 26), Leipzig 1971.
  • The Auditorium Coelicum at the cathedral in Erfurt. A contribution to the university history of Erfurt (= Erfurt theological writings, vol. 6), St. Benno-Verlag, Leipzig 1962.


  • Gerhard Hartmann: The Bishop. His election and appointment. History and actuality. Styria Verlag, Graz 1990. (pp. 124–160 offer a detailed account of Meisner's election as Archbishop of Cologne; summarized by Christoph Fleischmann: Der Ewige Kardinal ( Memento of December 4, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 28 kB), sheets for German and international politics 1/2009, pp. 33–36.)
  • Hubertus Mynarek : First Servant of His Holiness. A critical portrait of Cologne's Archbishop Joachim Meisner. Kiepenheuer & Witsch, Cologne 1991, ISBN 3-462-02283-0 .
  • Short biography for:  Meisner, Joachim . In: Who was who in the GDR? 5th edition. Volume 2. Ch. Links, Berlin 2010, ISBN 978-3-86153-561-4 .

Web links

Commons : Joachim Meisner  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Sabine Nitzschke / Michael Baudisch: 25 years after the Katholikentreffen in 1987. Retrieved on July 5, 2017 .
  2. 20 years ago there was the only GDR-wide catholic meeting: Great encouragement. July 9, 2007, accessed July 5, 2017 .
  3. Hans Ester: This is not our house: the role of the Catholic Church in the political developments of the GDR . Ed .: H. Ester, H. Häring, E. Poettgens and K. Sonnberger. Editions Rodopi, Amsterdam - Atlanta 1992, ISBN 90-5183-334-2 , pp. 39 ( ).
  4. Společnost pro církevní právo (Praha): Treaty of the Free State of Prussia with the Holy See , June 14, 1929.
  5. Cologne declaration against incapacitation - for open catholicity (PDF; 22 kB).
  6. Bernd Eyermann, Frank Vallender, Joachim Westhoff: "The first World Youth Day with two Popes". In: General-Anzeiger. August 8, 2005, accessed July 16, 2017 .
  7. cf. Codex Iuris Canonici , can. 401
  8. Pope rejects Cardinal Meisner's resignation. General-Anzeiger, November 28, 2008, accessed on March 28, 2018 .
  9. ^ Rinuncia dell'Arcivescovo Metropolita di Cologne (Germania). In: Bolletino. Sala Stampa della Santa Sede, February 28, 2014, accessed March 8, 2014 (Italian).
  10. (dpa, KNA, epd): Cardinal Meisner expects retirement in February at the latest: "Assume that I will be completely let go". In: . December 10, 2013, accessed December 10, 2013 .
  11. Cardinal Meisner died at the age of 83 - "fell asleep peacefully". In: . July 5, 2017. Retrieved July 5, 2017 .
  12. Joshua Bung: Cardinal Meisner laid out in Sankt Gereon. In: RP Online . July 7, 2017. Retrieved July 8, 2017 .
  13. Sabine Kleyboldt: Procession and Exequien for Cardinal Meisner. Last resting place in Cologne Cathedral. In: July 15, 2017. Retrieved July 15, 2017 .
  14. EWTN.TV: Alice Schwarzer and Cardinal Meisner - A special friendship. Retrieved August 13, 2019 .
  16. Pascal Beucker, "Church man threatens with secular judgment", taz regional edition Cologne, January 26, 2005 .
  17. ( Memento from October 5, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
  18. Text of the settlement ( Memento from January 3, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Meisner waived the rights that were granted to him with the injunction and bore the costs of both proceedings; Beck maintained his criticism of the content and repeated his declaration not to use the term in this context any more.
  19. Guidelines for Multi-Religious Celebrations by Christians, Jews and Muslims
  20. ^ Documents - Archbishop's Policy on Multi-Religious Celebrations in Schools. (PDF) Press office of the Archdiocese of Cologne, December 6, 2006, archived from the original on March 28, 2018 ; accessed on March 28, 2018 .
  21. Meisner: School decree does not discriminate against Muslims, (KNA)
  22. Guidelines for Prayer at Meetings of Christians, Jews and Muslims, 2nd, revised and updated edition, 2008 ( Memento of November 7, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 265 kB)
  23. Deutschlandradio from June 20, 2006: I have a bad feeling
  24. Gernot Facius in Die Welt of July 14, 2003: Not everyone can believe what they want
  25. South German: Volker Beck calls Meisner "hate preacher"
  26. Meisner: Family is the relationship between father, mother and child. Pro - Christian media magazine, August 3, 2009, accessed on March 28, 2018 . .
  27. n-tv of March 25, 2007: Meisner criticism of family policy
  28. of December 24, 2007
  30. David Berger: Homosexuality in the Church - "I must no longer be silent". Frankfurter Rundschau, April 23, 2010, accessed on March 28, 2018 .
  31. Catholic clinics reject rapists . In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , January 17, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
  32. Cardinal Meisner apologizes after the hospital affair . In: Die Welt , January 22, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2013.
  33. Cardinal Meisner allows the form of the morning-after pill - ethical consequence. Domradio, January 31, 2013, accessed on March 28, 2018 (with an explanation of the press office of the Archdiocese of Cologne).
  34. ↑ The doctor must come to a responsible decision on his own. ( Memento from February 8, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) Explanation from the press office of the Archdiocese of Cologne from January 31, 2013.
  35. Deutschlandfunk, September 17, 2007: Interview with PEN President Strasser
  36. WDR-Kultur Online from September 23, 2007: After a statement about "degenerate" culture, the Archdiocese of Cologne defends its cardinal ( Memento from September 18, 2007 in the Internet Archive )
  37. Tagesanzeiger October 8, 2007
  38. "Cardinal Meisner intellectual arsonist" "Cardinal Meisner intellectual arsonist" ( memento of October 12, 2007 in the Internet Archive ), Tagesspiegel of September 16, 2007.
  39. ^ Andreas Rossmann : Richter's cathedral window. Stale prejudices of a cardinal . In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung of August 31, 2007, p. 33, and of August 31, 2007.
  40. Meisner compares biologists Dawkins with Nazis . In: Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger online . November 1, 2009.
  41. Bernhard Borgeest: Opus Dei: The world of the ascetic servants of God . In: Focus online . May 1, 2007, accessed July 7, 2017.
  42. ^ Excerpt from the sermon of Cardinal Joachim Meisner on the 100th birthday of Blessed Josemaría, January 19, 2002
  43. The secret servants of God . In: Der Spiegel 49/2006.
  44. Fear is about in holy Cologne . In: Kölner Stadtanzeiger online . November 21, 2006.
  45. The ruler of the cathedral . In: Stern online . October 17, 2007.
  46. God's watchdog . In: Spiegel Online . April 4, 2011.
  47. Not even human . In: Kölner Stadtanzeiger online . October 25, 2006.
  48. Personal details compact KW11 2010 (16)
  49. ^ Bishops' conference honors Cardinal Meisner's services., January 11, 2009, accessed May 30, 2019 .
  50. ^ Archbishopric Cologne, epd: Archbishopric founds Cardinal Meisner Foundation for Eastern and Southern Europe: for pastoral care and priests. December 18, 2013, accessed December 19, 2013 .
  51. ^ Stephan Brockmeier: Hermann-Josef Frisch: Pastor takes "Sabbath time" Kölnische Rundschau from August 20, 2012
  52. Archbishopric Cologne: Joint declaration on the further priestly activity of Pastor i. R. Hermann Josef Frisch. ( Memento from January 1, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) August 30, 2013
  53. Diethelm Nonnenbroich: Frisch no longer preaches in Overath Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger from September 11, 2013
  55. of November 14, 2016; from November 30, 2016
  56. Die Tagespost , issue December 1, 2016, p. 5.
  57. AAS 76 (1984), p. 67.
  58. AAS 87 (1995), p. 1167.
  59. AAS 83 (1991), p. 247.
  60. AAS 75 (1983), p. 406.
  61. AAS 95 (2003), p. 160.
  62. AAS 83 (1991), p. 111.
  63. AAS 85 (1993), p. 635s.
  64. AAS 76 (1984), p. 749.
  65. AAS 76 (1984), p. 196.
  66. AAS 83 (1991), p. 908.
  67. ^ Obituary - "Strong Advocate of the Church in Eastern Europe". In: press release. Renovabis, July 5, 2017, accessed March 28, 2018 .
  68. ^ "Doctor Honoris Causa KUL Joachim Kardynał Meisner" , KUL , May 6, 2005
  69. ^ "The CU conferred an honorary doctorate on Cardinal Meisner" , Catholic University Ružomberok , October 6, 2011
  70. Hartmut Kaczmarek: Leave a lot of traces in Thuringia. Thuringian newspaper, March 1, 2014.
  71. ^ Post from February 27, 2019
predecessor Office successor
Alfred Cardinal Bengsch Bishop of Berlin
Georg Cardinal Sterzinsky
Joseph Cardinal Höffner Archbishop of Cologne
Rainer Maria Cardinal Woelki