Journalist and Lutheran theologian Uwe Siemon-Netto reflects on the upcoming fiftieth anniversary of the beginning of construction of the Berlin Wall, "And the wall fell down flat." He relates the story of the Christian peace movement and its role in tearing down the spiritual walls that helped to hold up the Berlin Wall.
"It is now 50 years since I saw the Wall go up and 22 since it came down," he writes. "The Christian movement in eastern Germany seems to have collapsed. When Germany was reunited on 3 October 1990, most Protestant churches did not even ring their bells in gratitude, in contrast to Catholic churches, which did. Once again, eastern Germans are turning their backs on the Christian faith in droves. Next to the Czech Republic, the former GDR is the most secularized region in Europe, and Berlin is the most godless city."