Wuerzburg cathedral in Munich, where Neo-activity by priests was alleged
Wuerzburg cathedral in Munich, where Neo-Nazi activity by priests was alleged

Two trainee Roman Catholic priests have been expelled from their German seminary in disgrace for a litany of racist and Neo-Nazi gestures, including jokes about Jewish deaths during the Holocaust.

One of the priests left his prayers and books to attend a white power music concert on the anniversy of Hitler's birth, while his colleague called for a 'negro' to come and clean the tables after a feast at the seminary in Wuerzburg.

The same pair got in trouble for singing the Badenweiler March, Adolf Hitler's favourite marching song, within the walls of the cloisters, while flipping Nazi salutes in the seminary pub.

The tasteless gags were punctuated by a steady stream of anti-Jewish jokes which were heard by other seminarians, one of whom described them as "unbearable."

The witness told a local hearing in Munich: "[The jokes] were "not 'Jewish jokes' in the sense of Yiddish or Jewish wit but ... completely unacceptable and unbearable 'concentration camp jokes' that mock the mass murder of countless Jewish children, women and men during the Third Reich".

The hearing was convened specifically to probe alleged Neo-Nazi acitivity among priests. In Germany, it is illegal to use signs and symbols of Nazism OR glorify the ideology.

In addition to the two expelled priests, the hearing heard that a third seminarian was guilty of Neo-Nazi behaviour, and even mocked an anti-racism march held to counter Neo-Nazi activity. However the third member of the racist group kept his place at the seminary.

Ludwig Schick, archbishop for the Bavarian city of Bamberg, addressed the media as the racism storm broke. He said: "What more must we do, where do we have to be more vigilant and resolute against racism, anti-Semitism, nationalism and xenophobia? All forms of xenophobia, racism and extremism are incompatible with Christianity.

"We have to make more intensive efforts at the seminary to increase the awareness of the [issue]."

Bavaria was the cradle of Nazism during the 1920s, before Adolf Hitler rose to power and began to propagate his hate-filled ideology across Europe, eventually sparking World War II.