Talking Germany - Johannes Kneifel, Former neo-Nazi - Present Day Pastor | Talking Germany | DW | 11.05.2015

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Talking Germany

Talking Germany - Johannes Kneifel, Former neo-Nazi - Present Day Pastor

Johannes Kneifel was a neo-Nazi who was convicted of assault and battery resulting in death. Now, 32 Kneifel says he found God when he was in prison. Today, he has become a pastor and say that everyone deserves a second chance. Join "Talking Germany," for when Kneifel relates the events that caused his conversion from a batterer to a Baptist Minister.

Watch video 31:40

Johannes Kneifel was born on July 6, 1982 in the central German town of Celle and grew up in Eschede in Lower Saxony. His father was nearly blind and his mother suffered from multiple sclerosis. Both lost their jobs and had difficulty caring for their three small children. They had little time for the kids. As a teenager, Johannes fell in with a group of militant, anti-foreign rightist extremist neo-Nazis. He landed in jail after being convicted of taking part in the fatal beating of a man in August 1999. While in prison, he completed a training program and says he found his faith with the help of the prison chaplain. Gradually, he came to renounce neo-Nazism. Later, he went on to study theology. Today he is the pastor at a small Baptist church in the Erzgebirge in southeastern Germany. He has also written a book about his experiences.