Die Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland und die vertriebenen Ostdeutschen
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Based on the debates within current German society on the expulsion of millions of Germans from what was then East Germany (Silesia, East Prussia, Pomerania etc.) and Eastern as well as South-Eastern Europe at and after the end of World War II, the article deals with the attitude of the Evangelische Kirche in Deutschland (EKD) towards this expulsion and the expellees up to the 1970s. Following a short account of the importance of the church for the expellees after the war, it examines the church's theological interpretation of the expulsion. It then looks at the ecclesiological principles which guided the integration of the expellees into the churches of the EKD. The article advocates the recovery of an ecclesio-cultural memory that includes the rich heritage of East German Protestantism.