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Germany: diocese of Magdeburg, a brochure against extremism. Democracy, social inclusion, cosmopolitism


“A culture of care, for cosmopolitism and democracy” is the literal translation of the title of a brochure that the diocese of Magdeburg, Germany, has just issued to respond to the “positions of right-wing populism that quite a lot of people identify with nowadays and that however question the fundamental values of cohabitation in our society”, bishop Gerhard Feige explains in the foreword, in a way that “is incompatible with Christian faith”. The brochure aims at “encouraging and supporting” those who want to commit themselves “to a supportive society and toa new culture of human relations”, the bishop goes on. The table of contents list a piece on the biblical and anthropological roots of human beings as related people, and some cues inspired by the writings of Mechthild of Magdeburg, a mystic. A more “operational” text provides guidelines on how to handle different opinions and views in parishes and groups, another one deals with the problem of “prejudice”. Then, there is a number of “examples of exciting commitment” that the diocese is already experiencing to fight extremist trends. This is followed by 11 tips on “what to do in practice when there is a far-right rally”, and by a number of dates and celebrations that may help “support a culture of care”; reference texts and above all addresses and contact details are listed for those who want to walk the way of social inclusion.


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