Ludwig Averkamp

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Ludwig Averkamp (born February 16, 1927 in Velen , Münsterland , Germany ; † July 29, 2013 in Hamburg ) was the first (modern) archbishop and metropolitan of Hamburg from 1995 to 2002 . Before that, he headed the Osnabrück diocese from 1987 to 1995 .


Ludwig Averkamp, ​​son of a farming family, entered the Münster seminary in 1947 and studied Catholic theology and philosophy at the universities of Münster and in Rome from 1947 to 1957 with a subsequent doctorate to become Dr. theol. The topic of his dissertation was the Christian joy in the Pauline letters . In 1954 he was ordained priest in Rome by Ettore Cunial . From 1957 he was chaplain in Ahsen and Rheine and then until 1965 President of the Episcopal Gymnasium and Studienkonvikt Collegium Johanneum in Ostbevern near Münster. From 1964 to 1971, Bishop Joseph Höffner took him as director of the Episcopal Theologian Convict Collegium Borromaeum in Münster. In 1971 he became a Regens of the Episcopal Seminary in Münster .

In 1973 Ludwig Averkamp was by Pope Paul VI. appointed titular bishop of Thapsus and auxiliary bishop in the diocese of Münster . He was ordained bishop on February 24, 1973 by the Bishop of Münster Heinrich Tenhumberg in the cathedral in Münster . Co-consecrators were the auxiliary bishops Heinrich Baaken and Laurenz Böggering . Averkamp was regional bishop of the Lower Rhine region from 1973 to 1986, based in Xanten .

On November 7, 1985, Pope Johannes Paul II appointed him coadjutor of the Bishop of Osnabrück Helmut Hermann Wittler with the right of succession. After the Pope accepted the resignation of Bishop Wittler on September 9, 1987, Averkamp automatically became the 75th Bishop of Osnabrück . He remained in this office until 1995, as he was appointed Archbishop of the re-established Archdiocese of Hamburg on October 24, 1994. His successor as Bishop of Osnabrück was Franz-Josef Bode . Averkamp was introduced to his office on January 7, 1995 by the Apostolic Nuncio Lajos Kada and was thus the first archbishop in Hamburg after 1,100 years. In terms of area, the Archdiocese of Hamburg is the largest in Germany. At the same time he was metropolitan of the ecclesiastical province of Hamburg .

In the German Bishops' Conference he was a member of the Commissions for Spiritual Professions and Church Services and Science and Culture . On his 75th birthday on February 16, 2002, Pope John Paul II accepted his resignation due to reasons of age. Werner Thissen was his successor as Archbishop of Hamburg . Averkamp was an honorary member of the KDSt.V. Wiking Hamburg in the CV . He was honorary capitular of the St. Paulus Cathedral in Münster.

After his retirement, Ludwig Averkamp continued to live in Hamburg, where he died on July 29, 2013 at the age of 86 after a long and serious illness resulting from two strokes. He was buried in the bishop's vault in the crypt of St. Mary's Cathedral in Hamburg .


  • On the sources and effects of Christian joy, according to Paul's letters (dissertation). Munster 1962.
  • together with Ludwig Bertsch : Priestly way of life. Nineteen posts. Image and text impulses , Secretariat of the German Bishops' Conference, Bonn 1984.
  • The Archdiocese of Hamburg after a year - situation and tasks . Übersee-Club , Hamburg 1996.
  • Path markings. Sermons and lectures by Archbishop Ludwig Averkamp . Sankt Ansgar Verlag, Hamburg 1998, ISBN 3-932379-13-6 .
  • In the service of the gospel - for the hope of the world. Words of the Archbishop from the founding years in the new Archdiocese of Hamburg . Sankt Ansgar Verlag, Hamburg 2002, ISBN 3-932379-18-7 .

Individual evidence

  1. Uwe Bahnsen , Kerstin von Stürmer: The history of Hamburg from 1945 to today . Sutton Verlag, Erfurt 2012, ISBN 978-3-95400-050-0 , p. 215.
  2. ^ Former Archbishop Ludwig Averkamp is dead , Archdiocese of Hamburg , August 3, 2013
  3. Dirk Fisser: Died in Hamburg: Former Osnabrück Bishop Averkamp is dead , Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung , July 29, 2013

Web links

predecessor Office successor
- Archbishop of Hamburg
Werner Thissen
Helmut Hermann Wittler Bishop of Osnabrück
Franz-Josef Bode