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Berlin's new Bishop : Good day, I'm the New

As he receives a bouquet of flowers, he does not know quite what to do with it. Somewhat in disbelief, Christian Stäblein is on Friday in the Bartholomew Church in the Berlin district of Friedrichshain. The President of the Synod of the Evangelical Church of Berlin-Brandenburg has announced-Silesian upper Lusatia (EKBO), Sigrun Neuwerth, the result of the second ballot of the Bishop election. Votes cast 113, relate it to Christian Stäblein 76. More Neuwerth's not coming. Thunderous applause breaks out. Christian Stäblein is elected Bishop.

the newly elected successor, Markus Dröge is overwhelmed in the first Moment, completely fits to Christian Stäblein. The theologian is down-to-earth and humble – and that's exactly what his Church loves him. In 2015, he was also elected to the Bartholomew Church to the Provost of the EKBO: He is the "vicar of the Bishop in the Church leadership," as it is officially called.

Countless appointments, he has completed in the municipalities. Stäblein sermon at the departure of the country posaunenwarts in Cottbus and comes to the philosophy of religion week of school in Luckau. He represents the EKBO in the Ecumenical Council, and completed a Tour through the municipalities, to discuss the sacrament of piety. But most importantly: He listens to the people and can talk to them.

On the 16. November, of course, Stäblein from his office will draw in the Consistory a floor higher. Then the 51-Year-old, married, with four children, the new office: From the Provost of the new Evangelical capital of Bishop. The head cleric of 940 000 Protestant believers who gather every Sunday in Neukölln, Berlin, Zehlendorf or Weissensee, but also in Brandenburg, Prenzlau or in the white water and Hoyerswerda in Silesia, upper Lusatia, to the worship of God. Stäblein has to hold it all together: The Pious and the less Pious, the Ossis and the Wessis, the troubled Peace, the Conservative and the liberal, the Fans of Johann Sebastian Bach, worship songs and Taizé.

"In diversity and richness

stay together," "A Bishop is a looker," says Stäblein. "One look, asks, says, looking, as it goes to the municipalities and how is it with the word of God is in the world and for the world." This staccato of word groups is typical of the sermons for Stäbleins. Quickly, the new Bishop composed the thoughts to each other, the said is alive. "The Fears, the experience of loss, Broken, it is not only feelings, we should listen to what fractions mean in the biography, removal of structures," says Stäblein. "Take part, take, close, do not do so, I have nothing to do with me."

Because even in the Evangelical Church there is an East-West debate: Not a single senior Cleric still has a DDR-biography, Stäblein. The theologian comes from lower Saxony. Stäblein was born in 1967 in Bad Pyrmont, and grew up in Hannover. According to the study of theology in Göttingen, Berlin and Jerusalem, he was at the University of Göttingen, where he received his doctorate.

After the Ordination he was parish priest, first in Lengede, later in Nienburg/Weser, and in 2008, then Director of studies in the monastery of Loccum – a Topjob at the Hanover Church, you give up only for Berlin. Since 2015, he is the successor of Friederike von Kirchbach, as Provost of the Lutheran Church in Berlin for the theological principle.

However, the origin of the lack of East Germans in positions of leadership is not the greatest challenge facing the new Bishop in the next few years. Even if Stäblein spoke on Friday of a "people's Church": Since their Foundation in 2004, the EKBO has lost almost 300 000 members of the Church – the Church, the departures of the goods to the slightest factor.

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the successor of Markus Dröge Christian Stäblein is the new Protestant Bishop in Berlin

for decades, the number of Baptisms is lagging behind that of the burials. And a trend reversal is not in sight. "It is important that we make the Church to foreign missionary and attractive, and in diversity and richness remain together," says Stäblein. "We need all the good ideas and initiatives, to talk as a Church about our space in the society." The people would have to can be found in the Evangelical Church, what they expected: "The Talk of the how God's word comforts and free."

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