Thursday, February 26, 2015

Cardinal Marx: We Won't Wait For Rome

His Eminence Reinhard Cardinal Marx
(Photo: Erzbistum München)
In a meeting reported in the German press yesterday, Cardinal Reinhard Marx, President of the German Bishop's Conference, made a rather unambiguous statement regarding how he and his fellow bishops see the upcoming 2015 Synod in relation to their plans for the Catholic Church in Germany:
We are not subsidiaries of Rome. Each Bishop's Conference is responsible for the pastoral care in its own cultural sphere and has its unique mission to preach the Gospel. We can't wait for a Synod to tell us how we here have to go about the pastoral care of families and married persons.
It was Cardinal Marx who made headlines during the 2014 Synod by speaking out in favor of applying the so-called "pastoral law of graduality" to the question of admittance of public adulterers to Holy Communion, telling reporters:
I think it is very important to see that we have ways or that there is a graduality also in the way to the sacrament.
Readers will recall that several Cardinals present at the 2014 Synod, most notably His Eminence Cardinal Raymond Burke, rejected such an approach as it requires the introduction of a hitherto unheard-of separation of pastoral practice from doctrine - a separation both Cardinal Gerhard Müller of Germany, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and Cardinal Robert Sarah of Guinea, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, have described as smacking of heresy. 

Decidedly unfazed by the clear warning contained in such declarations, Cardinal Marx and the other members of the German Bishop's Conference appear determined to charge ahead, regardless of the actual results of the Synod scheduled to take place in Rome this Fall.


  1. So should we start a pool now on how long the episcopalianization of the German church will take?

    This sort of thing leaves me wondering if people forget that there is such a thing as the internet and the rest of the world *will* find out what you said. As a new Catholic, I'm left pondering how much bishops can get away with, and can they really manage to declare doctrine optional with impunity?

  2. Dear Tonestaple,

    Congratulations on your entry into the Catholic Church! You've come at a time which will surely be remembered as one of the most eventful periods in her long history. As Bishop Athanasius Schneider recently put it, we are undergoing the forth great crisis in the Church - the first three being the Arian Heresy, the Great Schism, and the Protestant Revolt. What's important to remember is that we've been through this kind of thing before - and worse - and we'll get through this as well. After all: non praevalebunt.

    Cardinal Marx has proven himself to be rather media-savvy and I feel safe in the assumption that knew full well that these words would find their way to both the German laity and the Roman Curia. As it stands, it amounts to little more than political posturing in the run-up to the 2015 Synod. But, even if Marx & Co. were to go into schism, I don't expect any to see punitive measures taken by this papacy. It might sound pessimistic, but I don't expect anything in the way of improvement in the governance of the Church until the generation of 1968 has gone to their eternal reward. That might seem long in human years, but in Church years, that's like saying next Tuesday.

    God bless


  3. We do have a Holy Template to use when we hear upstarts like Marx speak words of heresy. We have 2000 years of Scripture and commentary, writings of The Fathers, Doctors and Saints. We have solid dogma and discipline developed over many, many, many papacies...that's the template.
    When something smells we need only apply the template to see it is heresy.
    Why do we hesitate to call heresy out when we see it? Denying a teaching of the Church, no matter what it is, disseminating it, and being obstinate it it is heresy.
    When the completion of the Synod is held in October we are going to witness Cardinal against Cardinal and Bishop against Bishop just as our Lady of Good Success prophesied at Quito. The goings on last October was just the beginning.
    I don't think we will have to wait for these poor deluded men to die off before we have a split: them, and us.
    Thank God for Archbishop Lefebvre!


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