“A Catholic German bishop has come under fire for his remarks condemning atheists. In a sermon given on Easter Sunday, the bishop of Augsburg, Walter Mixa, warned of rising atheism in Germany. ‘Wherever God is denied or fought against, there people and their dignity will soon be denied and held in disregard,’ he said in the sermon. He also said that ‘a society without God is hell on earth’ and quoted the Russian author Fyodor Dostoyevsky: ‘If God does not exist, everything is permitted.’

Most controversially, he linked the Nazi and Communist crimes to atheism. ‘In the last century, the godless regimes of Nazism and Communism, with their penal camps, their secret police and their mass murder, proved in a terrible way the inhumanity of atheism in practice.’ Christians and the Church were always the subject of ‘special persecution’ under these systems, he said.”