On 25 April, German magazine BILD published the story of a card game-group in the city of Bremen. Every Tuesday-morning pensioners Hasso Söckneck (84), Karl-Heinz Weber (76) and Meinhard Ahting (64) meet up with seven friends to play Skat and make merry in their church’s meeting house on the Wilhelm-Raabe street, and have done so for the past seven years. But last week they were trumped by an Islamic meeting, and barred from the church. They were told by a member of the church staff that their card game was off the table. When Ahting suggested they play in the cellar, because there were empty rooms there, he was told this wasn’t an option. That day, the meeting house would have to be completely “men free“. Members of the player group think the church’s approach is scandalous. As Karl-Heinz Weber puts it:

We Christians are banned from entering the home of our Christian congregation, because there is a meeting by Muslims.

Ahting, his cards-partner, said:

Throwing us out has nothing to do with tolerance. We have to abide by Muslim rules in our own church location. That scares me.

The parish’s pastorin Birgot Locnikar (53) regrets the incident. The minister told BILD:

We had invited people to a feel-good day for single mothers. Some of them were Muslims. There was a free room. But unfortunately this information was not correctly communicated with our Skat-players.

Ahting contradicts this:

The meeting home had to be free off men, because the Muslim women wanted to take off their head scarves without being molested.

The pastorin now wants to invite the Skat-pensioners to the international cooking group with Christian and Muslim women, to smooth things over. Maybe try an apology.