Were the Nazis Atheists?
Atheists were to blame for Nazism according to the Catholic bishop of Augsburg, Walter Mixa. Mixa warned of the dangers of rising atheism in Germany on Sunday, saying that the Nazi regime was an atheist one. In reality, it is simple to prove Mixa’s statement is a dangerous and diabolical lie.
“In the last century, the godless regimes of Nazism and communism, with their penal camps, their secret police and their mass murder, proved in a terrible way the inhumanity of atheism in practice,” he said. Mixa also claimed that Christians went through a “special persecution” under these regimes.
If history was taught correctly, every child would know that Hitler and the Nazis were not “godless,” and their reign of terror was certainly not “atheism in practice.”
A simple study of history shows that Hitler was a deeply religious man.
“We are not a movement, rather we are a religion,” said Hitler. “I’m going to become a religious figure” (Robert G.L. Waite, The Psychopathic God: Adolf Hitler).
When exterminating Jews, Hitler saw himself as doing the work of God. “Christ was the greatest early fighter in the battle against the world enemy, the Jews …. The work that Christ started but could not finish, I—Adolf Hitler—will conclude,” he said in 1926 (John Toland, Adolf Hitler).
Hitler had the German Army wear belt buckles inscribed with “Gott Mit Uns”—God with us. He modeled his SS after the Jesuit order, and directed SS officers to study the work of the Jesuits’ founder, Ignatius of Loyola (Waite, op. cit.).
These are not the words and deeds of an atheist. Hitler’s was a horribly sick and twisted religion, not atheism. There is an important lesson to learn from this history: Religion can lead to the murder of masses of people.
But what was Hitler’s religion? He was born, and remained all his life, a Catholic. The church never excommunicated him. In fact, the history of the Catholics’ collaboration with the Nazi and fascist regimes is irrefutable.
Avro Manhattan wrote in his book Catholic Terror Today, “Bishops took an oath of allegiance to the fascist dictatorship and the clergy were ordered never to oppose it or incite their flock to harm it. Prayers were said in churches for Mussolini and for fascism. Priests became members of the Fascist Party and were even its officers.”
The Vatican cooperated with the Nazi regime in a similar way. In 1933, Hitler signed a concordat with the Vatican. The church agreed to keep priests and religion out of politics while Hitler, among other things, granted complete freedom to confessional schools throughout the country—a notable victory for German Catholics.
The Vatican even asked God to bless the new German Reich! It ordered all German bishops to swear allegiance to the Nazi regime with an oath that ended, “In the performance of my spiritual office and in my solicitude for the welfare and the interest of the German Reich, I will endeavor to avoid all detrimental acts which might endanger it” (Toland, op. cit.).
So much for the Nazis being atheist. The Vatican was fully, if not enthusiastically, complicit with the Nazi regime.
The pope refused to lift a finger to save the Jews. Phil Baum, executive director of the American Jewish Congress, once lamented the Vatican’s reluctance to “impose moral culpability on some leading church authorities … who were either indifferent or in some cases actually complicit in the persecution of Jews” (emphasis mine).
The Catholic Church fully supported the evil Croatian regime in its mass murder of Orthodox Serbs during World War ii. Both Pope Pius xii and the man who would later become Pope Paul vi met the Croatian leader several times, and they knew exactly what he was doing. In July of 1997, a United States Treasury document was published accusing the Vatican of hoarding Holocaust gold for the Croatian Nazi puppet regime during and after World War ii.
After the war, the Vatican was instrumental in smuggling Nazi war criminals to safety.
We now have reams of documentation showing that the Catholic Church was in receipt of Nazi-plundered gold. We have the documented proof from Western intelligence archives, and personal testimony of many involved, that fugitive Nazis—many guilty of horrific war crimes—were given safe passage via Vatican links to Latin America, Australia, Canada and other locations, including the Arabic Middle East and Africa.
To say that the Nazis were atheists is a lie—and Bishop Mixa knows it. Social Darwinism did play a key role in Nazi doctrine, but most Nazis firmly believed in God. Actually, the history of World War ii shows what kind of regimes the Vatican has been willing to support just to get power, and what it is willing to do to convert people to its way of thinking.
It has been this way for all of the Vatican’s history.
For more information, see our booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.