Fighters, cooks, sex toys

Children and young people present around one hundred thousand red handprints from 34 countries to German President Horst Kohler this Thursday in Berlin. With the "Red Hand Day of Action", human rights and aid organizations want to draw attention to the fate of more than 250.000 child soldiers.


Strengthening marriage by candlelight

"Men and women just don't fit together": More and more divorces with fewer and fewer weddings at the same time seem to prove Loriot's insight. Is salvation now coming for the institution of marriage that has been declared dead so many times?? An action week, which starts this Saturday and lasts until Valentine's Day, is intended to pamper married couples.

Candlelight dinners, wedding ring polishing, movie nights, dance classes or "romantic church services" are offered everywhere in Germany, but also courses for communication training or an information evening with a lawyer for family law. In Eutin in Schleswig-Holstein, married couples get discount percentages on shoes during the week according to the number of years they have been married. A network that now includes more than 100 partners has emerged in recent months, reports Andrea Fleming in Munich, national press spokeswoman for "Marriage Week". "What they all have in common is that they want to highlight why marriage is important."Marriage Weeks are already celebrated in Great Britain, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Switzerland. In 1996, the English businessman Richard Kane had reflected on how married couples could be supported. He therefore declared the week before Valentine's Day as Marriage Week. Kane was even able to win the then head of government Tony Blair and his wife Cherie as patrons. Patrons of the first German campaign this year are ZDF Director-General Markus Schachter and his wife Veronika, who tied the knot 33 years ago. "

We want to get our marriage enthusiasm across" Graduate theologian Rolf-Dieter Braun from Hurlach near Landsberg am Lech once met Richard Kane. Since then, he has been enthusiastic about its idea, Braun tells epd. When a nationwide association "Marriage-Week" was founded last year, his wife Doris and he were right on board. "We want to get our marriage enthusiasm across," says Braun, who has been married for 27 years. Marriages are not only confining. Their importance as pillars of society is underestimated, he says.From the environment of Christian initiatives come the main actors of the "Marriage Week" in Germany. For example, "Team F" from Ludenscheid, which offers marriage and family seminars, the "Youth with a Mission," to which the Brauns belong, and the Catholic "Community Spirit and Mission" are leading the way. But press spokeswoman Fleming stresses that "Marriage Week" is "not a Christian fishing expedition". Rather one wants to bring also restaurants, cinemas and trade, educational facilities and municipalities in the boat.


“Should i not doubt?”

Cardinal Reinhard Marx © Frank Rumpenhorst

Kardina Marx rules out a blessing for homosexual relationships, as well as the ordination of women to the priesthood – but the discussion about it does not. Moreover, he too doubts God from time to time. But also without church there is a way to God.


Direction decision

The Bundestag is faced with an ethical decision: should it allow or ban pre-implantation diagnostics?? Prior to the decision, supporters and opponents of PGD promoted their positions in an objective and serious debate. The number of supporters of a PGD ban was recently about the same as that of those MPs who are in favor of allowing genetic testing of embryos in a few or more generous exceptional cases.