Reich Concordat 1933

ConcordatThe Reich Concordat was an agreement that was intended to regulate the relationship between the German Reich and the Catholic Church. It was signed by representatives of both entities on July 20, 1933, and ratified on September 10, 1933. The Vatican, which sympathized with the Nazi regime’s anti-liberal, anti-Communist stance, hoped that by withdrawing from all political areas it could buy a legal guarantee of its special institutional rights – i.e., self-administration and confessional freedom. Although the Nazi regime had no intention of keeping its contractual obligations, it did appreciate the international prestige this agreement brought and hoped that it would placate the Catholic Church for the time being. Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli, the future Pope Pius XII rejected Adolf Hitler’s claim that the Concordat between Nazi Germany and the Vatican implied any moral approval of the Nazi Party or the Nazi movement.

He argued that the Concordat was nothing more than an agreement designed, from the Vatican’s perspective, to help protect the rights of Catholics in Germany. However, Cardinal Faulhaber, who helped negotiate the concordat with Hitler, assessed its international impact in a 1937 sermon:

“At a time when the heads of the major nations in the world faced the new Germany with cool reserve and considerable suspicion, the Catholic Church, the greatest moral power on earth, through the Concordat expressed its confidence in the new German government.” According to Adolf Hitler at the time of the signing, “An opportunity has been given to Germany in the Reich Concordat and a sphere of confidence has been created that will be especially significant in the urgent struggle against international Jewry.”

As a consequence, it was easier for Hitler to argue that his anti-Semitic measures were simply a continuation of what the Catholic Church had been doing for centuries.

Reich Concordat between the Holy See and the German Reich (July 20, 1933)
German History in Documents and Images (GHDI)

Reichskonkordat (with Hitler, 1933): Full text
Concordat Watch
Complete text: Concordat, Supplementary Protocol and Secret Supplement

Concordat of 1933
Wikipedia

About the Reichskonkordat
Concordat Watch

The Vatican Concordat With Hitler’s Reich
America – The National Catholic Review

Concordat Between the Holy See and the German Reich
July 20, 1933
New Advent

Part IV: The Concordat with Hitler
European Institute of Protestant Studies

The Pope, Concordat and Holocausts
Concordat Watch

Concordat negotiations: Austria 1933
Concordat Watch

Part IV: The Concordat with Hitler
European Institute of Protestant Studies

The Vatican Concordat With Hitler’s Reich
The Concordat of 1933 was ambiguous in its day and remains so.
Holocaust Survivors and Remembrance Project: “Forget You Not”™

Cardinal Pacelli Denies Hitler’s Claim that Concordat is Approval of Nazism
Skepticism.org

The Pope, Concordat and Holocausts
Concordat Watch

Concordat negotiations: Austria 1933
Concordat Watch

Reich Concordat between the Holy See and the German Reich (July 20, 1933)
German History in Documents and Images (GHDI)

Part IV: The Concordat with Hitler
European Institute of Protestant Studies

 

 

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