The important thing about Hitler's faith isn't his relationship with God (which is between him and God) but his relationship to the 98% of Germans who considered themselves "Christians".
Shrewd politician that he was, Hitler knew how urgent it was that he appear to be a "Christian" like them, and it was crucial that his church not deny him that political asset - which is exactly what the church should have done, had it been faithful, instead of being complicit by its silence, in Hitler's deceit. The percentage of citizens who identify themselves with particular denominations was very important then, as it is even today, in nations where church and state are not at all separate, but which instead regularly distribute huge sums of tax money to churches on the basis of that percentage.
"World War & Holocaust" ( 1939-1945 )
- "Impressed with the organization of the Papacy, Hitler is quoted as saying the following: "I learned much from the Order of the Jesuits…until now there has never been anything more grandiose on the earth than the hierarchical organization of the Catholic Church. I transferred much of this organization into my own party."
(Hermann Rauschning, Hitler Said To Me (1939), 266-267.
- "Amongst the accusations which are directed against Germany in the so called democracies is the charge that the National Socialist State is hostile to religion. In answer to that charge I should like to make before the German people the following solemn declaration:
[ That last sentence sums up Hitler's stand on the priesthood. Rather than standing for atheism, as today's Christians would like, Hitler attacked the priesthood only to the extent that they got in his way.]
- No one in Germany has in the past been persecuted because of his religious views (Einstellung), nor will anyone in the future be so persecuted . . .
- The Churches are the greatest landed proprietors after the State . . . Further, the Church in the National Socialist State is in many ways favoured in regard to taxation, and for gifts, legacies, &c., it enjoys immunity from taxation.
It is therefore, to put mildly – effrontery when especially foreign politicians make bold to speak of hostility to religion in the Third Reich. . .
I would allow myself only one question: what contributions during the same period have France, England, or the United States made through the State from the public funds?
- The National Socialist State has not closed a church, nor has it prevented the holding of a religious service, nor has it ever exercised any influence upon the form of a religious service. It has not exercised any pressure upon the doctrine nor on the profession of faith of any of the Confessions. In the National Socialist State anyone is free to seek his blessedness after his own fashion .
There are . . . ten thousands of priests of all the Christian Confessions who perform their ecclesiastical duties just as well as or probably better than the political agitators without ever coming into conflict with the laws of the State.
But on one point it is well that there should be no uncertainty: the German priest as servant of God we shall protect, the priest as political enemy of the German State we shall destroy."
( Hitler, a speech in the Reichstag on 30 Jan., 1939
- "The National Socialist Movement has wrought this miracle. If Almighty God granted success to this work, then the Party was His instrument."
( Hitler proclamation to the German People, 1 January 1939
- "In the course of my life I have very often been a prophet, and have usually been ridiculed for it. During the time of my struggle for power it was in the first instance only the Jewish race that received my prophecies with laughter when I said that I would one day take over the leadership of the State, and with it that of the whole nation, and that I would then among other things settle the Jewish problem. Their laughter was uproarious, but I think that for some time now they have been laughing on the other side of their face. Today I will once more be a prophet: if the international Jewish financiers in and outside Europe should succeed in plunging the nations once more into a world war, then the result will not be the Bolshevizing of the earth, and thus the victory of Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe!"
Hitler speech to the Reichstag, 30 January 1939, as quoted at The History Place
- "If positive Christianity means love of one's neighbour, i.e. the tending of the sick, the clothing of the poor, the feeding of the hungry, the giving of drink to those who are thirsty, then it is we who are the more positive Christians. For in these spheres the community of the people of National Socialist Germany has accomplished a prodigious work."
( Hitler speech to the "Old Guard" at Munich, 24 February 1939
- "Help yourself, then God will also help you! The German people was created by Providence, not in order to obey a law which suits Englishmen or Frenchmen, but to stand up for its vital right. That is what we are there for!
Hitler speech at Wilhemshaven, 1 April 1939
- "The judgment whether a people is virtuous or not virtuous can hardly be passed by a human being. That should be left to God."
( Hitler speech at Wilhelmshaven, 1 April 1939
- "I can give vent to my inmost feelings only in the form of humble thanks to Providence which called upon me and vouchsafed it to me, once an unknown soldier of the Great War, to rise to be the Leader of my people, so dear to me. Providence showed me the way to free our people from the depths of its misery without bloodshed and to lead it upward once again. Providence granted that I might fulfill my life's task-to raise my German people out of the depths of defeat and to liberate it from the bonds of the most outrageous dictate of all times. . . I have regarded myself as called upon by Providence to serve my own people alone and to deliver them from their frightful misery."
( Hitler speech before the Reichstag, 28 April 1939
On April 20, 1939, Archbishop Orsenigo celebrated Hitler's birthday. The celebrations, initiated by Pacelli (Pope Pius XII) became a tradition. Each April 20, Cardinal Bertram of Berlin was to send "warmest congratulations to the Fuëhrer in the name of the bishops and the dioceses in Germany" and added with "fervent prayers which the Catholics of Germany are sending to heaven on their altars."
((from Hitler's Pope: The Secret History of Pius XII, by John Cornwell )
"During Hitler's fiftieth birthday celebration (1939), special votive masses were held in every German church "to implore God's blessing upon Fuhrer and people," and the Bishop of Mainz called upon Catholics in his diocese to pray specifically for "the Fuhrer and Chancellor, the inspirer, enlarger and protector of the Reich." The Pope did not fail to send his congratulations."
- "As Fuehrer of the German people and Chancellor of the Reich, I can thank God at this moment that he has so wonderfully blessed us in our hard struggle for what is our right, and beg Him that we and all other nations may find the right way, so that not only the German people but all Europe may once more be granted the blessing of peace."
( Hitler speech before the Reichstag, 6 October 1939
- "[I] never lost my belief, in the midst of setbacks which were not spared me during my period of struggle. Providence has had the last word and brought me success."
( Hitler speech, 23 November 1939
- "It would be easier for the Devil to go to church and cross himself with holy water than for these people to comprehend the ideas which are accepted facts to us today."
( Hitler speech in Berlin, 10 December 1940
- "The conception of the new Movement, whose fundamentals can be expressed in a single sentence: "The Lord helps those who help themselves," opposed this. That is not only a very pious phrase, but a very just one. For one cannot assume that God exists to help people who are too cowardly and too lazy to help themselves and think that God exists only to make up for the weakness of mankind. He does not exist for that purpose. He has always, at all times, blessed only those who were prepared to fight their own battles. . . Providence has not led us along these amazing paths in vain. On the day that the party was founded I recalled that our nation once gained immense victories. Then it became ungrateful, disunited, sinned against itself. Thereupon it was punished by Providence. We deserved our defeat. If a nation forgets itself as completely as the German nation did at that time, if it thinks that it can shake off all honor and all good faith, Providence can do nothing but teach it a hard and bitter lesson. But even at that time we were convinced that once our nation found itself again, once it again became industrious and honorable, once each individual German stood up for his nation first and not for himself, once he placed the interests of the community above his own personal interests, once the whole nation again pursued a great ideal, once it was prepared to stake everything for this ideal, the hour would come when the Lord would declare our trials at an end."
- "If fate should once more call us to the battlefield, the blessing of Providence will be with those who have merited it by years of hard work. When I compare myself and my opponents in other countries in the light of history, I do not fear the verdict on our respective mentalities. Who are these egoists? Each one of them merely defends the interests of his class. Behind them all stands either the Jew or their own moneybags. They are all nothing but money-grubbers, living on the profits of this war. No blessing can come of that. I oppose these people merely as the 0 champion of my country. I am convinced that our struggle will in the future be blessed by Providence, as it has been blessed up to now."
( Hitler speech in Munich, 24 February 1941
- "But he who dares to use the word "God" for such devilish activity blasphemes against Providence and, according to our belief, he cannot end except in destruction."
( Hitler speech before the Reichstag about Jews and international "warmongers," 4 May 1941
- "I did not want this struggle. Since January, 1933, when Providence entrusted me with the leadership of the German Reich, I had an aim before my eyes which was essentially incorporated in the program of our National Socialist party. I have never been disloyal to this aim and have never abandoned my program. . . Only when the entire German people become a single community of sacrifice can we expect and hope that Almighty God will help us. The Almighty has never helped a lazy man. He does not help the coward. He does not help a people that cannot help itself. . . The principle applies here, help yourselves and Almighty God will not deny you his assistance."
( Hitler radio broadcast from Berlin, 3 October 1941
- "If the Providence has so willed that the German people cannot be spared this fight, then I can only be grateful that it entrusted me with the leadership in this historic struggle which, for the next 500 or 1,000 years, will be described as decisive, not only for the history of Germany, but for the whole of Europe and indeed the whole world. The German people and their soldiers are working and fighting today, not only for the present, but for the coming, nay the most distant, generations. A historical revision on a unique scale has been imposed on us by the Creator. . . The next incursion against this homestead of European culture was carried out from the distant East. A terrible stream of barbarous, uncultured hordes sallied forth from the interior of Asia deep into the hearts of the European Continent, burning, looting, murderinga true scourge of the Lord. . . From the time when the Movement I consisted of seven men, until we took over power in January 1933, the path was so miraculous that only Providence itself with its blessing could have made this possible. . . Our enemies must not deceive themselvesin the 2,000 years of German history known to us, our people have never been more united than today. The Lord of the Universe has treated us so well in the past years that we bow in gratitude to a providence which has allowed us to be members of such a great nation. We thank Him that we also can be entered with honor into the ever-lasting book of German history!"
Hitler speech before the Reichstag, 11 December 1941
- "My fame, if Providence preserves my life, will consist in . . . works of peace, which I still intend to create. But I think that if Providence has already disposed that I can do what must be done according to the inscrutable will of the Providence, then I can at least just ask Providence to entrust to me the burden of this war, to load it on me. I will beat it! I will shrink from no responsibility; in every hour which . . . I will take this burden upon me. I will bear every responsibility, just as I have always borne them. . . Thus the home-front need not be warned, and the prayer of this priest of the devil, the wish that Europe may be punished with Bolshevism, will not be fulfilled, but rather that the prayer may be fulfilled: "Lord God, give us the strength that we may retain our liberty for our children and our children's children, not only for ourselves but also for the other peoples of Europe, for this is a war which we all wage, this time, not for our German people alone, it is a war for all of Europe and with it, in the long run, for all of mankind."
Hitler speech in Berlin, 30 January 1942
- "May therefore God give us the strength to continue to do our duty and with this prayer we bow in homage before our dead heroes, before those whom they have left behind in bereavement, and before all the other victims of this war."
( Hitler radio address, 15 March 1942
- "I, for my part, acknowledge another precept which says that man must deal the final blow to those whose downfall is destined by God."
( Hitler address to the Reichstag, 6 April 1942
- "One of our most important tasks will be to save future generations from a similar political fate and to maintain for ever watchful in them a knowledge of the menace of Jewry. For this reason alone it is vital that the Passion play be continued at Oberammergau; for never has the menace of Jewry been so convincingly portrayed as in this presentation of what happened in the times of the Romans. There one sees in Pontius Pilate a Roman racially and intellectually so superior, that he stands like a firm, clean rock in the middle of the whole muck and mire of Jewry."
( Hitler on the Passion Play at Oberammergau, 5 July 1942
- "In my eyes, the year 1942 already has behind it the most fateful trial of our people. That was the winter of '41 to '42. I may be permitted to say that in that winter the German people, and in particular its Wehrmacht, were weighed in the balance by Providence. Nothing worse can or will happen. That we conquered that winter, that "General Winter," that at last the German fronts stood, and that this spring, that is, early this summer, we were able to proceed again, that, I believe, is the proof that Providence was content with the German people. . . You do not realize what is hidden beneath these words in the way of human heroism, and also of human pain, and suffering, and we may say, often anxiety too, naturally, deathly anxiety on the part of all those who, especially for the first time, are placed before the trial of God in this highest court."
( Hitler speech in Berlin, 30 September 1942
- "And today I stand by this same view. Fate, or Providence, will give the victory to those who most deserve it. . . And when now, after 10 years, I again survey this period, I can say that upon no people has Providence ever bestowed more successes than upon us. The miracles we have achieved in the last three years in the face of a whole world of enemies are unique in history, especially the crises we very naturally often had in these years."
( Hitler speech in Munich, 8 November 1942.
- "If there is a God, then he gives us not only life but also consciousness and awareness. If I live my life according to my God-given insights, then I cannot go wrong, and even if I do, I know I have acted in good faith."I may not be a light of the church, a pulpiteer, but deep down I am a pious man, and believe that whoever fights bravely in defense of a natural law framed by God and never capitulates will never be deserted by the lawgiver, but will, in the end, receive the blessings of Providence."
([ Hitler, July 5, 1944 speech ].
- "(re: one of several failed assassination attempts) "The bomb which was planted by Colonel von Stauffenberg exploded two meters to my right. It seriously injured a number of my colleagues who are very dear to me; one has died. I myself am completely unhurt apart from a few minor skin abrasions, bruises and burns. I interpret this as confirmation that Providence wishes me to continue my life's mission as I have in the past."
- "Few people can begin to imagine the fate which would have overtaken Germany had the assassination attempt succeeded. I myself thank Providence and my Creator not for preserving memy life consists only of worry and work for my PeopleI thank him only for allowing me to continue to bear this burden of worry, and to carry on my work to the best of my ability.
- "Once again I take this opportunity, my old comrades in arms, to greet you, joyful that I have once again been spared a fate which, while it held no terror for me personally, would have had terrible consequences for the German People. I interpret this as a sign from Providence that I must continue my work, and therefore I shall continue it."
( Hitler from a radio broadcast, 20 July 1944
- "God the Almighty has made our nation. By defending its existence we are defending His work. . . Only He can relieve me of this duty Who called me to it. It was in the hand of Providence to snuff me out by the bomb that exploded only one and a half meters from me on July 20, and thus to terminate my life's work. That the Almighty protected me on that day I consider a renewed affirmation of the task entrusted to me. . . Therefore, it is all the more necessary on this twelfth anniversary of the rise to power to strengthen the heart more than ever before and to steel ourselves in the holy determination to wield the sword, no-matter where and under what circumstances, until final victory crowns our efforts. . . In the years to come I shall continue on this road, uncompromisingly safeguarding my people's interests, oblivious to all misery and danger, and filled with the holy conviction that God the Almighty will not abandon him who, during all his life, had no desire but to save his people from a fate it had never deserved, neither by virtue of its number nor by way of its importance. . . In vowing ourselves to one another, we are entitled to stand before the Almighty and ask Him for His grace and His blessing. No people can do more than that everybody who can fight, fights, and that everybody who can work, works, and that they all sacrifice in common, filled with but one thought: to safeguard freedom and national honor and thus the future of life."
( Hitler radio address, 30 January 1945
- "Providence shows no mercy to weak nations, but recognizes the right of existence-only of sound and strong nations. . . This Jewish bolshevist annihilation of nations and its western European and American procurers can be met only in one way: by using every ounce of strength with the extreme fanaticism and stubborn steadfastness that merciful God gives to men in hard times for the defense of their own lives. . . We have suffered so much that it only steels us to fanatical resolve to hate Our enemies a thousand times more and to regard them for what they are destroyers of an eternal culture and annihilators of humanity. Out of this bate a holy will is born to oppose these destroyers of our existence with all the strength that God has given us and to crush them in the end. During its 2,000-year history our people has survived so many terrible times that we have no doubt that we will also master our present plight."
( Hitler recorded radio address, 24 February 1945
- "In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. How terrific was his fight against the Jewish poison. Today, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed his blood upon the Cross."
- "I have followed [the Church] in giving our party program the character of unalterable finality, like the Creed. The Church has never allowed the Creed to be interfered with. It is fifteen hundred years since it was formulated, but every suggestion for its amendment, every logical criticism, or attack on it, has been rejected. The Church has realized that anything and everything can be built up on a document of that sort, no matter how contradictory or irreconcilable with it. The faithful will swallow it whole, so long as logical reasoning is never allowed to be brought to bear on it."
Hitler, from Rauschning, _The Voice of Destruction_, pp. 239-40
- "There is a road to freedom. Its milestones are Obedience, Endeavor, Honesty, Order, Cleanliness, Sobriety, Truthfulness, Sacrifice, and love of the Fatherland."
( [Message painted on walls of concentration camps and signed , signed "Hitler"; Life, August 21, 1939]
On May 3, 1945, the day of Hitler's death, the Catholic press of dictator Franco, published the following eulogy in honour of the Fiihrer:
"Adolf Hitler, son of the Catholic Church, died while defendimg Christianity.... words cannot be found to lament over his death.... Over his mortal remains stands his victorious moral figure. With the palm of the martyr, God gives Hitler the laurels of Victory."'