GHDI logo
German History in Documents and Images
return to system

"Christ in an Hour of Need": 72nd German Catholic Congress in Mainz (September 1-5, 1948)
When choosing a location for the first German Catholic Congress after 1932, postwar Church leaders deliberately selected Mainz because it had been the site of the first German Catholic Congress in 1848 and because they wanted to hold the centennial in the same place. The motto of the congress, “Christ in an Hour of Need,” was linked to the demand: “Don’t Complain, Act!” The participants in the twelve working groups discussed a variety of social issues at meetings closed to the public: youth, Christian upbringing, family, women, broadcasting, film, press, culture, the relationship between Catholics and Jews, emergencies/crisis relief, responsibility for faith and the Church (i.e. the relationship with modern science and technology) and other social topics, especially refugees and workers.

The clergy in the photograph are (first row, from right to left): Wilhelm Berning (bishop of Osnabrück), Lorenz Jäger (archbishop of Paderborn), Cardinal Josef Frings (archbishop of Cologne), Aloisius Muench (papal nuntius), Albert Stohr (bishop of Mainz). Photographer unknown.