I am learning German and I understand the general du versus Sie rules, but I had a question as it pertains to religion. I was watching the German language film Vision — From the life of Hildegard von Bingen. For those who don’t know, she was a Benedictine sister, Abbess, theologian, etc. from the 12th century. I noticed that the sisters and brothers used du with each other and even with their superiors in the order — the Abbot and the Magistra.
Do the standard social rules and respecting hierarchy completely change when one is in the religious orders?
Something peculiar to the time period perhaps — 12th century?
Is this somehow related to the fact that God is addressed with Du and that carries over here?