Richard Henkes is one of the people who defended the Christian image of man against the ideology of the National Socialists. After the National Socialists seized power, the Pallottine Father was increasingly targeted by the Gestapo because of his critical statements. As a teacher, retreat master and pastor, Richard Henkes took an offensive stance on anti-Christian propaganda and participated in the copying and distribution of the encyclical "Mit brennender Sorge" (With Burning Concern) and the sermon of the Bishop of Münster, Clemens August Graf von Galen, critical of the regime on the so-called "euthanasia" programme. Richard Henkes said what could no longer be said. Father Henkes was denounced several times until he was arrested on 8 April 1943 and deported to the Dachau concentration camp.
When a typhus epidemic broke out in the camp at the end of 1944, he volunteered to care for the sick. In the process, he became infected and died on 22 February 1945 just a few weeks before the liberation of the camp. On 15 September 2019, Richard Henkes was beatified as a martyr of charity in Limburg Cathedral.
My strongest side is the willing sacrifice out of love. I want to become a sacrificial priest, a bearer of the cross for others.
It was the first beatification in Limburg Cathedral: On 15 September 2019, hundreds of faithful, including many from Poland and the Czech Republic, celebrated the beatification of Richard Henkes by Roman Curia Cardinal Kurt Koch.read more
And if the
truth destroys me
The illustration team of Volker Schlecht and Alexandra Kardinar, under the artist's name "Drushba Pankow", impressively and vividly narrate the life of the Pallottine Kardinar, under the artist's name "Drushba Pankow", tell the story of the life of the Pallottine priest Richard Henkes as a graphic documentary. On the basis of historical events and and letters of Richard Henkes, the illustrations depict his path to becoming a martyr for the his path to becoming a martyr of charity. For the graphic documentary Volker Schlecht developed the storyboard and Alexandra Kardinar the colouring concept. The fictional characters of the narrator and his wife, based on sworn testimonies. based on sworn testimonies. The hook is the prominent Auschwitz trial, which memories of the events in the Dachau concentration camp and thus of Richard Henkes. Richard Henkes and thus leads into the actual plot. In several flashbacks that develop from the conversation between the fictional narrator and Richard Henkes. Richard Henkes, various periods of Father Henkes' life are discussed:
the care of his sick fellow brother Franz Xaver Salzhuber, whom Henkes had served with during World War I, his crisis period in the seminary, his work in Frankenstein and Branitz, his arrest, and finally his time in the Dachau concentration camp until his death are all chronicled in the Graphic Documentary.
The Graphic Documentary "And if the truth destroys me" has now also been made available in Czech.
The Graphic Documentary has already won several awards, including third place in the Book & Editorial Illustration category at the European Design Awards 2020, being nominated for the ICOM Independent Comic Prize 2020, and being included in the American Illustration Annual 38 (AI-AP).
The guide in German and Czech accompanies your visit through the exhibition "And when the truth destroys me" about the life story of Richard Henkes.read more
The exhibition "And when the truth destroys me" shows images from the graphic documentary of the same name and is dedicated to the life of the Dachau martyr.read more
Horst Sakulowski: "Relic"
The artist Horst Sakulowski titles his drawing of Blessed Richard Henkes a "relic". A symbolic memorial sheet for the prisoner with the number 49642.read more
The artist Beate Heinen created a much acclaimed portrait of the martyr priest in 1995. This "life portrait" of Richard Henkes can be seen today in many Pallottine branches around the world. The original is in Vallendar.read more
HALTUNG heute is an offer to deal with existential questions and challenges. Credible role models provide orientation and help develop values and attitudes.read more: www.haltung-heute.de