Wilhelm Hahn

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Poster announcement by Wilhelm Hahn for the 1984 European elections

Wilhelm Hahn (born May 1 . Jul / 14. May  1909 greg. In Dorpat (now Tartu / Estonia ); † 9. December 1996 in Heidelberg ) was a Lutheran theologian and politician of the CDU .

He should not be confused with Wilhelm Hahn, the church archivist of the Schleswig-Holstein regional church, who was a member of the NSDAP and a supporter of the German Christians .


Hahn grew up in Estonia. After his father, Traugott Hahn, was murdered by the Red Army in 1919, the family fled to Germany, where Hahn attended the Evangelisch Stiftische Gymnasium in Gütersloh . During his school days he was a member of the Young German Order . He then studied Protestant theology at the universities of Tübingen , Göttingen , Bonn and Münster . During this time he became a member of the Association of German Students in Tübingen . In 1932 he passed his first state examination in theology and was then tutor in Austria . In the summer of 1933 he joined the Stahlhelm . In the time of National Socialism he returned to Germany and became involved in the Confessing Church , in particular through the co-founding of the Brotherhood of Assistant Preachers and Vicars of the Confessing Church in March 1934 . After his doctorate as Dr. theol. in Tübingen in 1937 he was the parish priest in Minden , but in 1942 he was drafted into military service. After returning from captivity in 1946, he worked as a regional councilor of the Westphalian Church and in 1949 was promoted to superintendent of the Minden church district.

In 1950 he became professor for practical theology at Heidelberg University . Two years later he was elected regional bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Oldenburg , but he did not take up this office because of differences of opinion among some synod members. In 1958 he became rector of Heidelberg University for two years.

After Hahn had been a member of the CDU since 1956, he was on the board of the Evangelical Working Group of the CDU and CSU from 1962 to 1979 , where he was chairman of the study group. On May 9, 1962, he moved into the German Bundestag as a replacement for the late Hermann Finckh , where he primarily devoted himself to cultural-political issues. After the state elections in Baden-Württemberg in 1964 , Prime Minister Kurt Georg Kiesinger brought him into his cabinet as Minister of Culture. He then resigned from the Bundestag on November 16, 1964. In 1968 he was elected to the state parliament of Baden-Württemberg . He held the office of minister of education until 1978, when he resigned as minister of education at the time. During his term of office, among other things, the school reform in Baden-Württemberg (abolition of numerous smaller schools), the establishment of new high schools and the universities of Ulm and Konstanz .

When Prime Minister Kiesinger became Federal Chancellor in 1966, Hahn strove to become Prime Minister in Baden-Württemberg, but failed because of Hans Filbinger . However, he remained Minister of Education and was Filbinger's deputy from 1972. Following his ministerial work, Hahn was chairman of the Indo-German Society until 1988 and chairman of the board of the Institute for Foreign Relations until 1992 .

After resigning as a minister, Hahn was elected to the European Parliament in the European elections in June 1979 . In 1980 he therefore no longer ran for the state parliament of Baden-Württemberg. In 1984 he was re-elected to the European Parliament, but he resigned in 1987.

Hahn died in 1996 at the age of 87. He was married to Elisabeth, geb. Rutgers, and had two children.

Works (selection)

Hahn wrote numerous theological books and essays.

  • The dying and rising with Christ with Paul. A contribution to the problem of the simultaneity of the Christian with Christ. Bertelsmann, Gütersloh 1937 (Tübingen, University, dissertation, 1937).
  • Christian faith and contemporary man. Seven lectures. Evangelical publishing house "Der Rufer", Gütersloh 1947.
  • Renewal of the Church from the Gospel. Evangelical publishing house "Der Rufer", Gütersloh 1949.
  • Worship and sacrifice of Christ. A study of the salvation event in Christian worship (= publications of the Evangelical Society for Liturgy Research . Vol. 5, ZDB -ID 591687-2 ). Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1951.
  • Education based on Christian responsibility. Four radio lectures (= life and truth. Issue 15, ZDB -ID 845149-7 ). Bechauf, Bielefeld 1955.
  • Contestation and Certainty. Sermons. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1958.
  • The center of the community. Regarding the question of the church service and the development of the congregation (= handbook for congregational work , issue 1). G. Mohn, Gütersloh 1959.
  • Democratic probation. Contributions to responsibility in church, politics and education. (Lectures). Staatsbürger-Verlag, Bad Godesberg 1965, 2nd edition (= Bürger und Staat. Vol. 1, ZDB -ID 1336946-5 ), Dümmler, Bonn u. a. 1967.
  • More education, more performance, more freedom. Education policy between desire and reality. Seewald, Stuttgart 1972.
  • I stand by it. Memories of a minister of education. Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, Stuttgart 1981, ISBN 3-421-06056-8 (autobiography).
  • European cultural policy. Essays on Education, the Media and the Church. Libertas-Verlag, Sindelfingen 1987, ISBN 3-921929-90-3 .
  • The end of socialism, a challenge for theology and the church. An analysis (= Idea eV Documentation. 91, No. 15, ISSN  0937-6984 ). Idea, Wetzlar 1991.
  • The reputation is always new. From 200 years of the Baltic theologian family Hahn. Hänssler, Neuhausen-Stuttgart 1993, ISBN 3-7751-1905-1 .

Prizes and awards


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Entry in the baptismal register of the university parish in Dorpat (Estonian: Tartu ülikooli kogudus)
  2. Louis Lange (Ed.): Kyffhäuser Association of German Student Associations. Address book 1931. Berlin 1931, p. 79.