The German Catholic bishops are calling for cooperation with Protestant groups in providing religious instruction in the nation’s schools.
Religious education is available to students in German public
schools, but the number of students opting to take those classes has
been dropping, as fewer families are religious active and fewer young
people are baptized.
To counteract the fall in enrollments, a working group of the German
bishops has suggested joining with Protestants, to ensure that schools
will have a sufficient number of students to justify offering religious
instruction in Christianity.
“Cooperation is of great importance for the
future of religious classes,” said Archbishop Hans-Josef Becker of
Paderbon, who led the working group.
Some German Catholics have taken the matter a step further,
suggesting that Christians should join with believers of other faiths,
supporting classes that offer general instruction in reliion.
A group of
163 academics joined in a statement: “A plural society needs people who
can judge religions with common sense and who are ready for dialogue.”