Some proposals of the German synodal path pose a threat to the unity of the Church. It is a very definitive reminder that the Holy See addresses the Church of Germany, Thursday 21 July. “It will not be permissible to start new official structures or doctrines in dioceses before an agreement agreed upon at the level of the universal Church. This would be a wound to ecclesial communion and a danger to the unity of the Church”, Could we read in the uncommon, unsigned “Declaration of the Holy See,” published at the beginning of the afternoon.
In this press release, published in Italian and German, the Vatican indicates that ‘It seems necessary’ To determine that German complex “He does not have the power to compel bishops and the faithful to adopt new modes of government and new approaches to faith and morals.”. The Vatican favors the work of the German Synodal Path “to merge” In the context of the Synod on the future of the Church, inaugurated by Pope Francis in September 2021.
Decisive step in September
The move by the German Church in 2019, after a sharp report on the Catholic Church’s shortcomings in its management of the sexual violence crisis, is causing growing confusion in the Vatican. This great thinking, which must end in 2023, will take a decisive step in September 2022, with a General Assembly bringing together bishops, priests, monks and laity from the ZdK, the Central Committee of German Catholics.
Publicly, the Vatican issued several warnings to the participants. This was particularly the case in June 2019, with a letter to the country’s Catholics, signed by the Pope himself, and then another letter, three months later, from the Prefect of the Synod of Bishops, Cardinal Marc Ollet.
In September 2020, Cardinal Luis Ladaria, president of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, rejected proposals about the possibility of Protestants conducting communion in Catholic churches, and vice versa. Recently, Francis had judged in an interview with Jesuit magazines that Germany was indeed “A very good Protestant church”. “We don’t need two”, commented.
“Forget the Holy Spirit”
In private, Francis will be more harsh in his criticism, as he identifies the Church of Germany as a counterexample of what a synodal approach should not become. “They are playing in the synod, but it is not a synod. They have forgotten the Holy Spirit” And so Francis was revealed before a group of bishops who were passing through Rome in the fall. The Pope sees in this approach a politicization of church life, denouncing in particular the interference of pressure groups.
“This new text from the Holy See does not surprise me, Source analyzes the Vatican. It is a reminder to say that every church should be able to express itself, but that no one can move forward alone. » A balance put to the test by the approach of German Catholics, as shown in Rome.
We either follow Rome or we don’t.
We watched with concern the recent statements of ZdK, whose leaders in recent days have demanded a change in the Catholic Church’s position on abortion and homosexuality, assuming “A Conscious Statement Against Existing Catholic Education”.
“The issue is so delicate that we cannot say that everything should be stopped at once, A German source at the Vatican said a few months ago. But at some point, you’ll have to say something. » She added: “At some point, the German bishops will have to say clearly: ‘We follow Rome,’ or ‘We don’t follow it.'” On the part of the Vatican, however, the warning this time is very clear. If called, ZDK indicated it would talk” jointly and as soon as possible With the Episcopal Conference, and with which responsibility sharing From the German collegiate method.