“Departure instead of demolition”

Numerous Hamburgers want to go on Saturday for the preservation of the Catholic schools in the Hanseatic city on the road. Regardless, the archdiocese plans to make further decisions on the future of the facilities on Monday.

The all-parents’ association and the "Save 21" initiative are again calling for a demonstration in Hamburg’s city center. The motto of the protest is "Aufbruch statt Abbruch – Rettet 21," as announced by the organizers. They expect several thousand people to attend.

Catholics invited

Speakers are expected to include Rainer Esser, managing director of the "Zeit" publishing house, and Nikolas Hill, a former Hamburg state councilor. Hill is one of the main players in a private initiative to create a "Hamburg School Cooperative" to preserve the schools.

Called to the demonstration are all Hamburg, which wanted to set a sign for the continuity of the Catholic schools in the city, it was said. Because the archdiocese has also put the real estate in its parishes to the test, the invitation is also explicitly addressed to all members of the Catholic parishes in Hamburg. The demonstration reportedly begins at 12.00 o’clock with a rally on Hansaplatz and is to lead afterwards to the St. Mary’s Cathedral.

Archdiocese in talks

The Archdiocese of Hamburg announced in late January that it would close up to 8 of its 21 Catholic schools in the Hanseatic city due to its precarious budget situation. Several initiatives have been working since then for the preservation of the facilities. Already on 24. February had, according to police, about 3.500 people demonstrated at Hamburg’s Rathausmarkt against the planned school closures.

The archdiocese has been in official talks with representatives of the "Hamburger Schulgenossenschaft" around Nikolas Hill for several weeks now. Recently, three models were discussed in order to "find a new form of joint responsibility for the Catholic school system in Hamburg". What they look like in concrete terms has not yet been revealed.

The diocese is currently discussing the models internally and has announced a decision for Monday.

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