“How far have we actually come??”

Cologne Cardinal Joachim Meisner is against Federal Agriculture Minister Horst Seehofer becoming CSU chairman if he has an extramarital affair. In the Cologne "Express" (Wednesday), Meisner asked the question: "How then does he want to become chairman of a Christian party?? How far have we actually come?" According to the cardinal, special demands may in principle be made on the private lives of public figures when it comes to the transmission of values. Meisner also commented on the pardon of RAF prisoners and the role of mothers in society.

This applies, for example, to a politician who has been divorced several times, he said, saying something about marital fidelity. "Everyone laughs at that," said the archbishop. When a politician experiences "one disaster after another" in his or her family, it is often said that the private sphere should be ignored. Meisner said: "Why?? Are we dealing with two different people in his case?? Or is he a split personality? Then he is schizophrenic and belongs to the doctor, but not on a minister's chair."Meisner criticized an understanding of family according to which "family is where children are raised". The marriage remains outside. "At the same time, marriage is the source of the family, and accordingly it should be nurtured and kept fresh by the spouses," Meisner said.

Recognizing motherhood as a profession

In the interview, the Cologne cardinal calls for recognition of motherhood as a gainful occupation. The diverse work of mothers must be reflected in their wallets and pensions. "The mother is a true multifunctional," the archbishop said. That would have to find more recognition.At the same time, Meisner lamented a widespread mistrust of the family institution. Mothers are "persuaded" that they cannot realize their own potential without a career. He had already experienced this in the GDR. "Now women are being talked into this again, as if making money is everything."With regard to all-day care and places in day nurseries, theCardinal said, "In the Bible, the day nursery is a provisional arrangement. We have made a permanent institution out of it, where children are abandoned shortly after the postpartum period or in the first year of life." In the process, boys and girls who grew up in an intact family were given social responsibility for their lives. Meisner literally: "They certainly don't have to run to the psychiatrist so often."

"Children do not fall from the sky"

The archbishop described marriage and family as the "basic constants of creation," through which the existence of society is secured. Many people no longer seem to realize this. "Children do not fall from the sky. They are conceived and born into a community of people," Meisner stressed.

Ex-terrorist Klar should show remorse

Former RAF terrorist Christian Klar should only be pardoned if he shows remorse, according to Meisner. Remorse is not a category of criminal law, but a category of genuine humanity: "That is why I expect remorse as a condition for a pardon in the legal sense as well"."Klar was involved in the murders of Hanns-Martin Schleyer, Siegfried Buback and Jurgen Ponto, and a few years ago had submitted a petition for clemency to the then Federal President Johannes Rau. His successor Horst Kohler has not yet decided on a pardon.

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