Max Josef Metzger

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Memorial to Max Josef Metzger.

Max Josef Metzger (3 February 1887 – 17 April 1944) was a Catholic priest and leading German pacifist who was executed by the Nazis during World War II.[1]

Born in Schopfheim in Baden, Germany, Metzger became a Roman Catholic priest and worked as a military chaplain for the forces of Imperial Germany during World War I. During that war he began to see peace work as an urgent task. Metzger became convinced that “future wars have lost their meaning, since they no longer give anybody the prospect of winning more than he loses.”[2]

At war's end, Metzger established the German Catholics’ Peace Association in 1919 and sought links to the international pacifist movement. Strongly advocating the ecumenical idea of peace he soon became known as a leading German pacifist.[3]

In 1938, Metzger founded the "Una Sancta Brotherhood," a group devoted to the re-unification of the Lutheran and Catholic churches.[citation needed]

After the rise to power of German dictator Adolf Hitler in 1933, Metzger was arrested several times by the Gestapo. In 1943, Metzger wrote a memorandum on the reorganization of the German state and its integration into a future system of world peace. When he tried to have this memorandum delivered to the Swedish Archbishop of Uppsala, Erling Eidem, Metzger was denounced by the courier. Metzger's memorandum never reached Uppsala. The courier was a female Gestapo agent, Swedish-born Dagmar Imgart,[citation needed] and Metzger was arrested on 29 June 1943.

Metzger was tried by the German People’s Court. The Judge-President of the court, Roland Freisler, said that people like Metzger should be "eradicated."[citation needed] Metzger was sentenced to death and he was executed on 17 April 1944 in Brandenburg-Görden Prison.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Max Josef Metzger; German Resistance Memorial Centre, Index of Persons; retrieved at 4 September 2013
  2. ^ Max Josef Metzger; German Resistance Memorial Centre, Index of Persons; retrieved at 4 September 2013
  3. ^ Max Josef Metzger; German Resistance Memorial Centre, Index of Persons; retrieved at 4 September 2013
  4. ^ Max Josef Metzger; German Resistance Memorial Centre, Index of Persons; retrieved at 4 September 2013

See also[edit]