Catholic church beatifies German priest who opposed Nazis
May 15, 2011, 13:02 GMT
Wuerzburg, Germany - The Catholic church on Sunday beatified Georg Haefner, a German priest who opposed Nazi rule and died in Dachau concentration camp in 1942.
Around 2,000 people attended the service in Wuerzburg cathedral, in the southern state of Bavaria, where the Vatican's Cardinal Angelo Amato came to officiate the beatification.
Haefner, born in 1900, was charged repeatedly for criticizing the Nazi regime. He refused to perform the Hitler salute and ignored a ban to continue his religious duties as the priest of Oberschwarzach, near Wuerzburg.
The priest was arrested in 1941 and taken to Dachau concentration camp, near Munich. He died there ill, hungry and fatigued by the agony of imprisonment.
The church considers Haefner a martyr for his resistance to the Nazi regime.
At least 3,000 Catholic priests, deacons and bishops were imprisoned in Dachau concentration camp, which served as the main camp for Christian religious prisoners.
Read more about Germany Religion
Read more about History