The Romeike family feel that Germany is prejudiced against Christians. The homeschooling family made international headlines after Eric Holder’s Justice Department overruled lower courts and ordered Uwe, Hannelore, and their children to be sent back to their native land.
The devout Christian family recently sat down with Morning Star News to share their story and detail the “animosity” they experienced when dealing with German officials. In 2010, an immigration judge gave the Romeike family asylum on human rights grounds, but the federal government appealed the court ruling and began the long legal journey which ultimately led to the Supreme Court.
The US Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals recently denied the Romeike family’s request for a new hearing on the asylum matter. Homeschooling was deemed an illegal act by Adolf Hitler prior to World War II. While the law has never been taken off the books, a hard line on the enforcement front had not always been taken until recently. The Department of Justice did not feel that the denial of the right to practice their religion and educate their children as they see fit constituted an infringement upon the Romeike family’s human rights and ordered them deported.
Excerpt from letter sent by Eric Holder’s Justice Department reads during the Romeike deportation hearings:
“Teaching tolerance to children of all backgrounds helps to develop the ability to interact as a fully functioning citizen in Germany. It is scarcely feasible, with those stated goals in mind, to tease from the opinion, a persecutory motive on the part of those who enforce the law.”
As previously reported by The Inquisitr, the Justice Department recently changed their stance on asylum for the Romeike family and granted them an “indefinite deferred status” meaning they can stay in America permanently unless they violate the terms of the agreement.
The family feels that the textbooks used in the German public school system conflicted with their Christian values, forcing them to break the law and begin educating their children at home. Uwe and Hannelore also maintain that being threatened with the loss of custody of their children over the exercise of faith amounted to persecution by the government.
Uwe Romeike had this to say regarding how he feels Christians are viewed in Germany:
“They didn’t always exhibit animosity openly, but they would at least call us bigoted. Also, you have to understand that most Germans would consider themselves Christians. That means they wouldn’t necessarily show animosity toward Christianity but rather call us ‘extreme religious’ or fanatic. Most times homeschooling families are portrayed in the media as extreme Christians, fundamentalists, fanatics, alienated from the modern world, even dangerous. Children were, for example, taught disrespect toward parents, teachers and adults in general, and witchcraft and devil worship was portrayed favorably. The Christian faith was ridiculed.”
The Romeike family of Tennessee includes seven children. Uwe currently serves as a pianist and deacon of the First Baptist Church in Morristown. They are happy with the final outcome of their deportation case and hope that the legal decision serves as a precedent for other homeschooling familes around the world who also feel persecuted for their religious and educational beliefs. Uwe did not want to take his family away from Germany, where he and his father had built the family’s custom home, complete with a music studio for the teaching of piano.
The homeschooling Christian father also added:
“Had we stopped teaching them at home and sent them back to public school, where we knew they would be taught against the Christian faith, we would have violated our conscience. This might not be physical persecution, but it is mental and spiritual persecution against us parents as well as against our children who at all times wanted to be homeschooled.”
Do you think the Romeike family was persecuted in Germany for their religious and educational beliefs?
[Image Via: Homeschool Legal Defense Association/Fox News]