The German Catholic bishops will be happy to come home again. According to the chairman Georg Bätzing, she managed her visit to Rome to see the Pope and the Curia. As in tired.
But thank goodness not quite. Neither Francis nor his most important cardinals, including the one responsible for the doctrine of the faith, have dissuaded the resisting Germans from their synodal path.
All topics were named, all addressed, and there were arguments about all of them. No matter what the pathetic pastoral communiqué claims, it wasn’t all that fraternal. Or if so, then like fighting brothers. In this respect, Bishop Bätzing is right: “I’m also going home with a certain concern, because I can’t estimate what dynamics this dialogue with the synodal processes will develop in the future.”
The German bishops are asking Rome to hear their arguments
His bishops’ conference doesn’t want to cut corners. The division of power in the church, the admission of women in ordained offices, the different approach to sexuality and partnership – the 62 clergymen are not all of the same opinion, only the methodology, content and suggestions of the synodal path are left untouched by the majority.
The bishops are asking to hear their arguments – it hasn’t gotten any easier since the visit to Rome. That is why the agreement is important, that the dialogue continues. Especially since, as Bätzing sensitively remarked, the Pope himself started a worldwide synod in which believers from all over the world can bring in their questions and opinions.
The Vatican will probably still be surprised; the Germans will not remain alone in their desire for change. Many are already observing – albeit silently – what is happening in Germany. For example, when it comes to the participation of women.
In the case of Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki, the Pope’s indecisiveness is hard to bear.
Stephan Andreas Casdorff
If the skepticism of the curia and the pope was hard to bear – in the case of Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki it certainly is. Woelki had submitted his offer of resignation to the Pope in connection with the issue of abuse, but he had not made a decision for months.
The archdiocese, and not only that, almost falls apart. The German bishops are all suffering under the conditions in Cologne. So hesitation is not a viable compromise here.
Speaking of compromise: German Catholics also want to avoid a split in the church. They don’t become that Lutheran. Decisions that the world church would have to make remain with the.
But the synodal path leads the bishops onto a different path. And turning back would not be a way out of the crisis. The shepherds must not get tired.
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