From Our German Correspondent General Goering. Prime Minister of Prussia and the head of the secret police, has issued a decree which is announced in the press as a "declaration of war against political Catholicism." The clergy is accused of systematically abusing religious matters for resisting and fighting the policy of the government. Herr Goering orders all authorities to use the severest measures against the " dangerous agita tion" of the clergy. Priests who teach religion in school are not only obliged to refrain from a negative attitude towards national socialism, but they have to support positively by their teaching the ideology and institutions of the party.
The German hierarchy is meeting in Fulda to consider the situation and probably to draft a common pastoral letter which will be of the utmost importance. On behalf of the Holy See. the Berlin nuncio has handed over to the Minister of Foreign Affairs a note of protest against the anti-Catholic attitude of nazi authorities and the numerous violations of the concordat.
General Goering's Decree The Osservatore Romano states in an editorial that minister Frick's speech in Munster and the subsequent decree which forbids any criticism of the sterilization laws make it clear that the deplorable incidents of the last time arc not to be ascribed to unresponsible extremists and hot-heads in the National Socialist Party, but to the policy of the government itself. The newspaper of the Vatican insists mainly on three points, the sterilization laws, the Catholic youth associations and the Catholic press. No German paper was able to reproduce the article, but its translation was read from the pulpits in most churches. General Goering threatens to dissolve the youth associations. His decree says: "The so-called Catholic youth organizations surpass more and more a merely religious activity. If they do not completely change their attitude. they will be considered as political and dissolved." Herr Gartner, the Minister of Justice, has been very anxious to follow the lead of his colleague and to issue a decree ordering all public prosecutors and tribunals to support the tight against political Catholicism and to make largely use of the law " for the protection of the nation and the state," of the "law on the abuse of the pulpit," and so on. The government have decided to concentrate all church affairs in one hand. Herr Kern, Minister without portfolio, has been appointed as Minister of Ecclesiastical Affairs. Herr Kerr! is Goering's friend, so the fact that he has no idea of the matters for which he is henceforth responsible is of no importance.
Thirty Priests Arrested These last weeks some thirty priests have been arrested under the most differ ent accusations. One is said to have covered the Hitler picture in the classroom with a cloth during the lessons of catechism. Another remained seated during some Hitler youth ceremony. Two other priests had warned their schoolboys against a meeting where Herr Manchmeyer was to talk. All German wireless stations have spread a morning solemnity of the Hitler youth. It had in almost all its parts a strong anti-Christian character and ended with the following words: " We want to see Our State living ie the bright light of eternity. but not in the gloomy shadow of the Church."
B ricish Comment
Among the numerous criticisms in the British press of the nazi attitude towards the Catholic Church, a leader in the Yorkshire Post of July 20 is notable. In the course of it the writer says: It is no modern phenomenon, this persecution of Catholicism, but recurs
in every century. Napoleon and Bismarck each essayed it. and each failed. Now perhaps is beginning the gravest and most resolute persecution of all. For to-day the State is, as never before, at grips with this undying Thing. The materialist State cannot come to terms with it: compromises and concordats must strain until they break. And if on one hand the State can command, as never before, the consent and cooperation of all kinds of men who have consciously rejected the spiritual for the material, the Church will in time rally to its support all those who know that the spiritual is the essential element in full human life.
Further de■clopments are reported by Reuter.
Confessional youth and, especially. Catholic organizations have been forbidden by a new order of the Minister of the Interior, Dr. Frick, to wear uniform; parade in public with flags; wear badges, or take part in field days.
This order is an extension to the whole Reich of a measure which has already long been in force in a large number of provincial districts.
An emergency church erected by 100 Protestant opposition church members in the parish of Krebbin, .Brandenburg, has been smashed up by unknown persons. The .communion-table and cross were destroyed.
U.S. Protest To Germany
Senators Walsh, McCarran, Lewis and Tydings have issued a statement warning the United States government against keeping silent whilst Catholics and Jews arc being persecuted in Germany. The statement made by President Roosevelt