Religion 1950 up to 2000

„Swords to ploughshares“ in the church of Belitz „Swords to ploughshares“ in the church of Belitz

region Mecklenburg

The church was mistrusted in the GDR. The youth community, with 25,000 members in the north, was discredited as being "subversive" in spring 1953.  

The Catholic Church received an episcopal commissariat (office) in Schwerin.

Despite the freedom of religion the state and SED wanted to replace communion and confirmation with “Jugendweihe” (youth initiation ceremonies). The church was obstructed as a centre by critics. Small communities withdrew from the political scene. The churches did charitable work with disabled people, families and youths.

In autumn 1989 evangelical churches were often the starting points for the protests against the SED-ruled state, which was dissolved in 1990.

In 1994 two Jewish communities were created in Rostock and Schwerin through the influx of people from the early Soviet Union. They formed the National Association of Jewish communities.

In 1995 the Catholic Church created the northern diocese for Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein and the Mecklenburg region.

A Muslim coordination council was created in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in 2009.

In 2012 the national churches in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein created the Lutheran "northern church."

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Schifferkirche-Ahrenshoop-Front-530_1 Church in Ahrenshoop, 1951

region Western Pomerania

The church was mistrusted in the GDR. The youth community, with 25,000 members in the north, was discredited as being "subversive" in spring 1953.

The Catholic Church in Western Pomerania counts 65,000 believers in 1953, but their numbers have fallen to 37,000 by 1962. Marian pilgrimages take place in Sellin and Bergen.

The Evangelical Church of Pomerania manages to hold onto its name until 1968, but calls itself the 'Evangelische Landeskirche Greifswald' thereafter.

Despite the freedom of religion the state and SED wanted to replace communion and confirmation with "Jugendweihe" (youth initiation ceremonies). The church was obstructed as a centre by critics.

The churches did charitable work with disabled people, families and youths.

In autumn 1989 evangelical churches were often the starting points for the protests against the SED-ruled state, which was dissolved in 1990. The Bishop of Pomerania, Horst Gienke, is forced to resign because of his ties to the SED.

The Catholic Church in Western Pomerania establishes the Priory of Greifswald in the Archbishopric of Berlin in 1993. Pastoral ministrations for Catholic holidaymakers are provided on the touristic islands of Usedom, Rügen, Darss and Zingst.

In 1994 two Jewish communities were created through the influx of people from the early Soviet Union. They formed the National Association of Jewish communities.

A Muslim coordination council was created in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in 2009.

In 2012 the national churches in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein created the Lutheran "northern church."

more