Far-right AfD member converted to Islam in protest at church’s gay marriage stance

A member of Germany’s far-right and anti-Muslim Alternative for Germany party (AfD) who recently converted to Islam has said he did so in protest at what he sees as the “moral decline” of the Protestant church.

Arthur Wagner, 48, until recently a leading party member in the state of Brandenburg, told the Bild newspaper on Wednesday that his decision was in part sparked by the church’s acceptance of same-sex marriage and the presence of priests at gay pride marches.

“One of the reasons (for the conversion) is tied to changes that have taken place in the church, which no longer reflects my values,” he told the daily.

Explaining his decision, he singled out the church’s position “with regard to the AfD, its support for marriage for all and the participation of pastors at Christopher Street Day, where there are children. It’s unacceptable!”

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