A leader of a religious group is invited to speak in a parliament of a secular state while leaders of other religions are not allowed.
This sentence stands alone for an apparent reason. Why would you prefer one religion over the other while your constitution states clearly that all religions must be treated as equals.
Secularism has a long tradition in Germany. Even before the French revolution in 1789 Friedrich II. of Prussia declared in 1740 that "all religions are equal and good as long as the people who live by them are honest and if the Turks and pagans come to live in this land we shall build them churches and mosques", and also: "All religions must be tolerated. The state must only see to it that none does harm the other since everybody must be allowed to find peace of mind through their own ways" (German quote: "Jeder soll nach seiner Fasson selig werden")
This clearly is the spirit of a secularist state and the spirit of our constitution. The spirit of a free nation.
A constitution that the now invited speaker clearly opposes as he just recently declared that he is strongly against secularist tendencies.
So let us take a look at the facts and see how much secularism there really is in Germany. Germany has only one religious group that is financially supported from tax payers money. The treaties for those payments date back to the times of the French revolution when property of the church was confiscated. It was later agreed that the churches were to be given a fair financial compensation. However: by accident the contract had no ending date on it. Since 200 years the Christian churches are now demanding this compensation to be paid by any tax payer in Germany, no matter if they are Christian, Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, Hindi or not religious at all.
The same religious group has their membership fees collected as taxes by the state and it is mandatory for every German to tell the authorities whether they are Catholic, Protestant or "other". In Germany this kind of support is unique to Christian churches only.
The same group proclaims to uphold public services like Christian kindergartens, Christian hospitals and Christian homes for pensioners. In reality though it‘s a fact that app. 95% of the expenses for these institutions are paid solely by tax payers.
The same group is also allowed to have their own laws when it comes to employees, ignoring basic constitutional rights - which no other religious group in Germany is allowed to do. This means for employees at Christian companies that they may be paid much lower wages, cannot join the union and are not allowed to go on strike. It is also possible for a Catholic institution to fire a woman for "moral reasons", like getting married again after having been divorced.
So while we truly have a secularist constitution, in reality we got our difficulties.
Now some politicians claim that Germany is "different" in the sense that it historically had a Christian culture. While this is true, we as Germans are the best example that despite the past we are able to learn, evolve and step forward as a united nation of free individuals, despite all our differences. This example is something very precious and unique to our wonderful country. Tolerance, equality and freedom are true German standards and something we should proudly uphold. Ergo: the argument is not valid.
Personally I don‘t mind the speech itself. But I mind the fact that democracy is committing a sin. As with any other sin it‘s not the deed itself that makes it sinful, it is the consequences. I wish to make this very clear: if we invite the pope to speak in our parliament and continue as we have done, we have no right to oppose other states doing as we do by calling on their own ancient "historic values" to promote and support one religion and discriminate others. If we did so they would - rightfully - call us on our double standards.
Thus I don‘t oppose the POPE speaking in the parliament. I oppose ANY religious leader speaking in the parliament at any time.