The Law of Honour of the SS-Man
In a slim volume called 50 Questions and Answers for the SS-Man the first question is: “What is your oath?” The answer is: “We swear to you, Adolf Hitler, loyalty and bravery as leader and chancellor of the German Reich. We vow to you and to the principles laid down by you obedience to the point of death. So help us God!” The second question is: “Thus you believe in a God?” The answer is: “Yes, I believe in a Lord God.” The third question is: “What do you think of a person who does not believe in a God?” The answer is: “I consider him arrogant, stupid, and a megalomaniac; he is not suited for us.”
I have reminded you of these three questions and answers in order to make our attitude to religion completely clear. Be in no doubt that we would not be able to be this body of men bound by a solemn oath if we did not have the firm belief in a Lord God who rules over us, who has created us and our Fatherland, our people and this earth, and who sent us our leader.”
Die Göttliche Ordnung. (God’s Eternal Order/Law)
In dieses Rechtsbild gehört die heilige Überzeugung unserer Vorfahren, daß alles, was es an Leben auf dieser Erde gab und gibt, von Gott geschaffen und von Gott beseelt sei. Törichte, böswillige und dumme Leute haben daraus die Fabel, das Greuelmärchen gemacht, als hätten unsere Vorfahren Götter und Bäume angebetet. Nein, sie waren nach uraltem Wissen und uralter Lehre von der göttlichen Ordnung dieser ganzen Erde, der ganzen Pflanzen- und der ganzen Tierwelt überzeugt.
(In this obeying unalterable laws are included the sacred belief of our ancestors, that everything on this earth was created by God and inspired by God. Only foolish, malicious and stupid people created this pagan fable, the horror stories, that our ancestors worshipped gods and trees. No, they were convinced in God’s ancient knowledge and ancient teachings of His Divine Order of this world, wherein we were created in His image and where the plant and the animal world co-exists.) – Heinrich Himmler. [Die Schutzstaffel als antibolschewistische Kampforganisation (The SS as an Anti-Bolshevik Fighting Organization)]
In ideological training I forbid every attack against Christ as a person, since such attacks or insults that Christ was a Jew are unworthy of us and certainly untrue historically.
– Heinrich Himmler, Bundesarchiv Berlin-Zehlendorf, 28 June 1937: Berlin
Gott Mit Uns! (Isaiah 7:14 & Matthew 1:23), Atheism was banned within the SS with all SS men being required to list themselves as Protestant, Catholic or “believer in God” (German: Gottgläubig [not Odin/Wodan gläubig]), BUT GOD WITH US!
(To the Germans it was a rallying cry, “a Christian as well as an Imperial motto, the expression of German religious, political and ethnic single-mindedness, or the numerous unity of God’s altar, throne and Volk”) – most people get so confused with Heinrich Himmler and the “Ahnenerbe”, which in simple English terms means Ancestral Heritage (not pagan heritage, if it was pagan, it would be called “heidnischen Erbe”)
In Talmudic Yewbrew notzri (pronounced “nazi”), literally “Followers of Jesus Christ of Nazareth,” means “a Christian;” being that the Third Reich was the most Christianized Nation in Europe.
In the Wewelsburg castle there was also a Christian Chapel — The Latin inscription above the entrance “Domus mea domus orationis vocabitur” (My House shall be called a House of Prayer) reminds of the prince-episcopalian chapel which was placed in the ground floor of the tower originally (before the allies covered it up for the world to know about it).
The green mosaic “sun wheel” is in fact a representation of Christ (John 8:12) and His Disciples in The Last Supper! The sun represents the Holy Scriptures, the Gospels (Malachi 4:2), “sun of righteousness”, symbolic of Christ.
In Der Propaganda des Schwarzen Korps (1938)
Unumstößliche Wahrheit ist, daß sich das religiöse Leben heute in Deutschland unter dem Schutz des nationalsozialistischen Staates freier und ungestörter entfaltet, daß GEGEN JEDE FORM von GOTTLOSIGKEIT UND GOTTESLÄSTERUNG MIT ALLEM MITTEL national-sozialistischer Erziehung und gesetzlicher Strafverhängung vorgegangen wird, daß Kirchen ihren religiösen Veranstaltungen so gesichert, ungestört und sorglos nachgehen können wie selten im Laufe der Geschichte und wie kaum in anderen Lande dieser Erde…
He was a Catholic who in the 1936 in a “Kirchenaustritt” left the Church. Whereas The völkisch “movement” opted for the status of gottgläubig (god believers – see below the ones who also STAYED AWAY from the NSDAP!), but not all Gottgläubigen (God Believers!) were völkisch, they remained Christian, but not belonging to any specific Church (supported the NSDAP!!!). Those who had established their faith in Christianity counted among the highest ranks of the NSDAP. For instance, in 1937 Walter Buch also left the church (father-in-law of Bormann), he persistent with his views on Christianity as here:
“When point 24 of our program says, the party stand for positive Christianity, here above all is the cornerstone of our thinking. Christ preached struggle as did no other. His life was a struggle for His beliefs, for which he went to his death. From everyone He demanded a decision between yes or no! That is the necessity: that man find the power to decide between YES or NO! [Walter Buch, Geist und Kampf (speech given between 1930 and 1932)]
(Ed Note on Bormann: In a secret 1939 memorandum defending Kirchenaustritt within the party, the anticlerical Bormann proclaimed that the clergy were not servants of God but of the church. Church service was not the same as service to God. One therefore had to distinguish between “ecclesiastical” and “religious,” between the Christian confession and the Christian worldview. [BAPNS 6/ 232/ 134-36 (2 February 1939: Munich).] (If (big if) by 1939 Bormann was already a sworn enemy of Christianity as well as the churches (as the propaganda goes), it seems he was not yet prepared to state so, even in confidential correspondence (!!!) (Given the many attempts within the party to curb Bormann, it is safe to conclude that, without Bormann, National Socialism would not have received the anti-Christian reputation. His obsession with the churches, a mounting hatred for his in-laws, his febrile need for Adolf Hitler’s affection, arguably constituted a departure from the true Christian essence of National Socialism [past and present]!)
Ironically, Himmler viewed the increase in the number of Gottgläubige with some trepidation. For being anticlerical, he demonstrated a remarkable degree of flexibility, continually insisting that SS men who chose to remain active Christians had every right to and must do so.
[Himmler’s earlier warnings that Christian SS be respected were repeated in 1938: See “Bekenntnis der Angehorigen der uniformierten Ordnungspolizei zu religions-und Weltanschauungsgemeinschaften und Teilnahme an Veranstaltungen derselben”: BAZ Schu 245/ 1/ 163-167 (13 June 1938: Berlin).]
In a 1937 speech he showed equal leniency on the question of Kirchenaustritt: “As you know, personally I have chosen to leave the church. But I do not wish for this to become a sport for lower-level leaders. To me it is truly preferable if someone takes one, two or five years to leave the church, thus leaving it out of true conviction, than for someone to follow a fashion, and do it only externally.” Bormann took a similar position (take note you feeble minded fools who keep repeating propaganda). In a confidential circular to Gauleiters, he advised that Kirchenaustritt was to be undertaken only by those truly and inwardly lost to the church and was not to be seen as a matter of opportunity. [BAPNS 6/ 334/ 48 (15 March 1941: Munich).]
Kirchenaustritt outside the party, as a larger phenomenon in German society, was not a striking success. In 1936, when Kirchenaustritt became a discernible tendency within the NSDAP, many reports indicated that statistics for people entering the church actually exceeded the numbers for those leaving it. At the very time when America’s allies, the Soviets, destroyed most of the Christian Churches in Russia and Ukraine, about 2500 NEW Christian Churches were built in Germany. NOT ONE Christian Church was ever closed! It was the law that school and church had priority over service in the Hitler Youth. As late as the fall of 1944, the Waffen SS Barracks in Breslau still supplied two buses to take the youth to either the nearest Catholic or Protestant church every Sunday. To be a registered member of a Christian church did not prevent advancement in the National Socialist Party! [Living in Hitler’s Germany – A Letter from Hans Schmidt of GANPAC, published in the Hoskins Report, Dec. 1993 (Richard Kelly Hoskins, publisher)]
This discrepancy between urban areas like Hamburg and rural areas like Thuringia points to the paradox that this “new initiative” within some of the members of the the NS Party found its greatest popular appeal in precisely those geographic areas where voters most consistently stayed away from the NSDAP at the polls. This was confirmed in a statistical report released by Martin Bormann in 1941, which gave the percentages of those listed as gottgläubig in each Gau for 1939. The top five were Berlin with 10.2%, Hamburg with 7.5%, Vienna with 6.4%, Düsseldorf with 6.0%, and Essen with 5.3%. [Stadtsarchiv München NSDAP /; 178 (15 August 1941: Führerhauptquartier). Of course, Vienna was not part of the original electoral map of the NSDAP in the Kampfzeit.]
Himmler believed that Jesus Christ was not a Jew. Himmler had trepidations that the average SS man would be unable to distinguish between attacks on the churches and a preservation of Christ. Therefore, in a 1937 memorandum marked “to all SS leaders from Standartenführer up,” Himmler instructed: “In ideological training I forbid every attack against Christ as a person, since such attacks or insults that Christ was a Jew are unworthy of us and certainly untrue historically.” [BAZ Sammlung Schumacher (hereafter Schu) 245/ 2/ 150 (28 June 1937: Berlin).]
He then added significantly , “I desire that SS men be convinced of the worth of our own blood and our past, through knowledge of the actual history of our Volk, the prehistory of our Volk, the greatness and culture of our ancestors, so that they will totally root themselves in the value of the past, present and future.” Not only Christ, but a belief in Christ as a part of German history, was to be respected in the SS. [BAZ NS 19/ 3134/ 2 (16 June 1937: Berlin).]
Further indications of Himmler’s positive feelings about Christianity arose in discussion of SS policies regarding the religious feelings of its members. In a speech to SS leaders in 1936, Himmler spoke of his own family’s Christian attachment and maintained that: “Not once did I touch his convictions, nor he mine.” He then indicated that religious tolerance would be embraced by the SS as well: “I believe that we must maintain such a position towards those elderly who cannot bring themselves to our path. For this reason I have also demonstrated understanding, and will continue to do so in the future , when someone tells me: out of respect for my parents I must have my child baptized. Please! Certainly! [“Rede des Reichsführer-SS anlässlich der Gruppenführer-Besprechung am 8. November 1936 in Dachau,” IfZ F 37/ 3 (8 November 1936: Dachau).]
Himmler consistently maintained that even within the SS, Christian viewpoints, must be respected. Two years earlier, in reaction to a particular incident , he announced: “I forbid SS members to pester, annoy or mock another due to his religious views. Just as the German has never tolerated religious constraint on himself, so are the religious convictions of his neighbours holy and inviolable to him.” This pertained not only to the religious views of individual SS men, but also to their conduct regarding religious institutions: “I most strictly forbid any disturbance as well as any tactlessness regarding religious events of all confessions (i.e. processions of the Catholic Church). Likewise, a tactful deportment when churches are visited out of historical or artistic interest goes without saying.” Himmler added that this order was to be enforced on pain of expulsion, the emphasizes were especially on any “pagan antagonizers”! [BAZ Schu 245/ 2/ 133 (15 September 1934: Berlin).]
A year later he renewed this order, explicitly basing it on the “National Socialist version of the age-old German right of freedom of conscience.” This freedom of conscience did have its institutional limits. In the same memorandum, Himmler forbade members of the SS from “any leadership activity in any kind of religious or faith community (for instance, German Faith Movement etc).” [BAZ Schu 245/ 2/ 134– 135 (20 September 1935: Munich).]
He did state publicly that his SS men must believe in God: and this was his private position as well.
Himmler took a favourable view of the Catholic teaching that a childless marriage was the “greatest sin of all.” Himmler stated his belief that “the decline in our birth-rate around 1900 coincided with the time when the German people began to inwardly free themselves from their very keen commitment to the churches.” This aspect of Christian orthodox teaching, Himmler declared to the assembled party members, “we can only welcome from a biological and racial point of view.” [IfZ F 37/ 3 (16 September 1942: Feldkommandostelle Rußland-Süd).]
Besides the declining birthrate, Himmler credited the Catholic Church with fighting another nemesis of National Socialist ideology: Freemasonry . As he put it in 1940 to his confidant Felix Kersten, “Only one power has not allowed itself to be deceived, the Catholic Church. She is the inexorable enemy of all Masonry. It is certainly known to you that any Catholic is automatically excommunicated the moment he becomes a Mason.” In this same eulogy, Himmler was less charitable to the Protestants: “Only the foolish Evangelical parsons have still not realized what is at stake. They join the Masons without realizing that they are digging their own graves.” [82 Ibid. , 149.]
Himmler also stated: “It’s true enough, and I’ve nothing against Christianity in itself; no doubt it has lofty moral ideas.” Himmler then proceeded to disclose the real reasons for his enmity: “We have to be on our guard against a world power which makes use of Christianity and its organization to oppose our own national resurrection by methods of which we’re everywhere conscious.” [83 Ibid. , 155.] Confronted with the distinction between hatred of Christian institutions and Christian ideology, Himmler stated that he was really anticlerical (especially Protestants with their constant anti-Catholic propaganda), not anti-Christian. [84 Ibid. , 155– 6.]
BAP 62 Di 1/ 37-1/ 116 (15 August 1941: Neustadt i. Sa.).
“In ideological training I forbid every attack against Christ as a person, since such attacks or insults that Christ was a Jew are unworthy of us and certainly untrue historically.”
– Heinrich Himmler, Bundesarchiv Berlin-Zehlendorf, 28 June 1937: Berlin