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Top Protestant bishop caught driving drunk

The Local · 23 Feb 2010, 17:49

Published: 23 Feb 2010 17:49 GMT+01:00

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Käßmann was pulled over on Saturday evening after running a red light in the city centre, and was found to have a blood alcohol content of 1.54 per mill, public prosecutor Jürgen Lendeckel confirmed on Tuesday.

The bishop, who was operating a church vehicle, apparently smelled of alcohol, and police asked her to undergo a breathalyser test. Well over the legal limit, Käßmann was taken to a nearby police station for a blood test.

“I’m shocked at myself,” Käßmann told daily Bild. “I am aware of how dangerous and irresponsible drunk driving is. I will, of course, confront the legal consequences.”

A church spokesperson told news magazine Der Spiegel that Käßmann’s blood alcohol content was 1.1 per mill, not 1.3 per mill as initially reported by Bild. The former is at the threshold of the legal limit, while the amount of 1.54 per mill as confirmed by the state prosecutor constitutes being “absolutely unfit to drive” according to German law.

Meanwhile Hannover police told the magazine that they had taken Käßmann’s driver’s license and begun an investigation into the matter.

Margot Käßmann became the first woman to lead the 25 million members of Germany's Protestant churches in October 2009 after the majority of the synod voted in her favour.

Käßmann has proposed a radical course of reform for the Evangelische Kirche Deutschland (EKD), which suffers from shrinking congregations and revenues. In addition to streamlining the clergy, she plans to increase the church’s profile and improve strained relations with Catholics.

Käßmann is known as an outspoken, tolerant and humorous leader, having once said: “Crabby Christians are a contradiction in themselves.”

Since taking her leadership post she has called for Germany to withdraw its troops in Afghanistan, calling the military action there "unjustified."

Story continues below…

In 2006 the mother of four was diagnosed with breast cancer, but has since recovered.

She also divorced her husband of 26 years in 2007, a decision that sparked initial reactions varying from “open criticism to the point of malice, contempt and hatred,” as she described it in a memoir published last September.

The EKD was founded in 1945 as a multi-denominational federation of Lutheran, Reformed, and United Protestant church bodies. After Germany’s reunification, the EKD combined both East and West German Protestant churches in 1991.

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:29 February 23, 2010 by pepsionice
The amusing thing to this...is that if you were the head of the Catholic Church in Germany....you'd have a chauffeur....because of this precise situation. So the Catholics at least plan this out ahead and keep their guy out of trouble.

As for what happens? They will take the license for around six months....and she gets a chauffeur out of this deal.....hopefully for a permanent position. Consider it another hired guy in the state of Germany....which in a way in positive.
11:49 February 23, 2010 by lordkorner
That old water into wine thing can really get you into trouble sometimes.
14:09 February 23, 2010 by bearded1
Come on is anything going to happen to her in this LEGAL SYSTEM

one rule for us another for THEM
14:16 February 23, 2010 by Edmond Schindler
Pedophiles and Alcoholics, that's where the 10% Church taxes go, paying fines...that's carrying a Holy message to the wicked in need of Salvation. NOT!

Too funny I tell ya, too funny!
16:17 February 23, 2010 by biker hotel harz
Shouldn't they have called Detective Vicar Saergent from the Church Police?
17:56 February 23, 2010 by Heinrich der Zweite
And it came to pass, that the red light was that of a poof and that she had sinned.

And God said "Repent and give gas". And she did so and got nicked. And she was chained to the Gates of Hell within the Jail of Hannover and thus saw the error of her ways. Here endeth the Lesson.
20:14 February 23, 2010 by mdspatsy
After reading this news and article from this website, and listened some news of her acts from some TV Channels.

This is very bad on religious points of view.

There is a logical sayings-No Man is Perfect.

I hope that, these drunken scenes and drunken habits will not occur while attending prayers at Churches,and on any vital social welfare functions.

God will forgive her.
23:12 February 23, 2010 by Fredfeldman
Does anyone wonder why Islam is in the ascendency and Christianity in decline in europe? This little episode speaks volumns. "Old europe" is bankrupt in more ways than one and too tired to save itself or its culture.
00:45 February 24, 2010 by Logic Guy
Well, this is obviously disappointing. When you are the leader of an organization, then surely there is more responsibility on your shoulders. High-profile individuals, as intelligent as they may seem, don't however understand this.

I'm a Christian and I've never done such a thing, and neither has most other Christians. Those of us who are deeply committed to the ways of God should become leaders. It's the only way Christianity well gain the respect of society.
12:15 February 24, 2010 by tollermann
Well said Logic Guy, the trouble is secularists think that they have all the answers and it is only them that are allowed to fail!
21:47 February 24, 2010 by fair1day
Since taking her leadership post she has called for Germany to withdraw its troops in Afghanistan, calling the military action there "unjustified."

In 2006 the mother of four was diagnosed with breast cancer, but has since recovered.

She also divorced her husband of 26 years in 2007, a decision that sparked initial reactions varying from ¦quot;open criticism to the point of malice, contempt and hatred,¦quot; as she described it in a memoir published last September.

Lady has had some tough times. Looking for answers in all the wrong places.
14:35 February 25, 2010 by Fredfeldman
Of course she had to quit. The "bishop" pretended to be a role model or why else was she a bishop in a christian church. That some people defend her shows how low expectations of the clergy have fallen in the western world. "Kine wunder" Islam is surplanting Christianity in europe.
19:50 February 25, 2010 by fair1day
Wow, tough folks here.

On the other hand she was driving drunk. I know 2 people that are in wheelchairs because of drunks driving.

She needs to resign everything. And "...go and sin no more.."
17:33 February 26, 2010 by Talonx
Religion is a dangerous waste of time when coupled with a drunk driver even more so, it it had been any non-sacred entity the mass of you idiots making jokes would be calling for her head, but put a little hat on and ... viola, different story. Hypocrits.
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