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European court rules against German diocese on dismissal of parish musician

Catholic World News - September 28, 2010

A European court has ruled that a German Catholic diocese cannot terminate the employment of a church musician who left his wife to live with another woman.

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg upheld the complaint of Bernhard Schueth, a music director at a parish in the Essen diocese. The European court ruled that German courts had erred in their findings that the diocese was justified in dismissing Schueth. Diocesan officials pointed to an employment contract under which Schueth, like other parish employees, had made a commitment to uphold the teachings of the Catholic Church.

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  • Posted by: jplaunder1846 - Sep. 29, 2010 1:44 AM ET USA

    As a Catholic and as a human rights activst for more than 30 years, I find the excursions of the Eurpoean Court of Human Rights into areas that are outside the realm of human rights or perversely against Human Rights somewhat bizarre. Their mindset is perhaps an example why Europen civilisation is in serious decline.

  • Posted by: Obregon - Sep. 29, 2010 12:28 AM ET USA

    The European Court of Human Rights has absolutely no right to interfere with the private affairs of the Roman Catholic Church or any other religion for that matter. I work for a Catholic institution and such an institution has the right to expect of me to live up to the values of the Catholic faith. If I don't, then I don't have a right to work for a Catholic institution.

  • Posted by: jflare293129 - Sep. 28, 2010 11:18 PM ET USA

    Uh, I'd like to avoid a name-calling contest here, but..are we SURE we eliminated the mindset of the National Socialist party? Unless I'm gravely mistaken, the Catholic faithful suffered grave persecution between 1935 and 1945. We must pray for sanity to be returned to the German people and the rest of Europe as well.

  • Posted by: tmsharel5764 - Sep. 28, 2010 10:14 PM ET USA

    All Bernhard Schueth needs to do is to petition his local diocesan tribunal for a lack of due discretion declaration of nullity. Then, poof, he's rid of the first marriage. The European Court may laugh at that, but it works for tens of thousands of Americans.

  • Posted by: Cornelius - Sep. 28, 2010 4:06 PM ET USA

    The European Court gets the wrong end of the stick EVERY TIME.

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