The German Synod (“walking together”): the culmination of German alienation from authentic Church renewal

My old friend Msgr Hans Feichtinger has a piece today at First Things about the clown-car of a synod (“walking together”) going on in that caput malorum omnium, Germany.  He’s German, though not working in Germany (lucky, he) and he knows what he is talking about.

Some snips:


It is off to a bad start.


The Synodal Way is the culmination of a long history of German alienation from authentic Church renewal, going back to before Vatican II. The Germans, well-funded and theologically supercharged, have immunized themselves against inspiration from other churches, against direction from Rome, and against reforming impetuses from within. The Synodal Way has begun by doing what the German church has done for decades: Talking about itself, and looking for ways to fit in with its secular surroundings.


The Synodal Way is dealing with the concerns of a bourgeois church that wants to bend traditional Catholic teachings and practices to its own ideas and principles.


Yet the Synodal Way mirrors the actual Catholic base much less than we were led to believe.


This elite is authentically concerned about church members; in Germany, however, “church members” does not necessarily mean those who go to Mass. Church members in Germany are principally those registered as Catholics with the state, those who pay the infamous church tax.


If the German church wants a future, it needs to get over its dependency on perceived social relevance, on institutional continuity, and on its connection to societal power. None of that is a primary goal for evangelization. The future depends on actually doing the work of evangelization in every generation, and certainly in 2020.

The Church in Germany and beyond should imitate King David: Once the prophet Nathan confronted David with his sin, the king was moved to contrition and repentance, ready to face the consequences.


Unless the Synod finds its way to doctrinal fidelity, schism will be the result.


“Walking together”… straight off the cliff.

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  1. Gaetano says:

    Evelyn Waugh said it best in a letter to Lady Daphne Acton, which commented on ”Liturgy and Doctrine” by Fr. Charles Davis and liturgical changes generally:

    “I think it a great cheek of the Germans to try and teach the rest of the world anything about religion. They should be in perpetual sackcloth and ashes for all their enormities from Luther to Hitler.”

  2. Atra Dicenda, Rubra Agenda says:


  3. Amerikaner says:

    And the synodal way will be implemented in a dictatorial way. A new Reich forms.

  4. Charles E Flynn says:

    Edward Pentin:

    Ukraine’s Latin Rite Bishops Issue Fraternal Correction of German Bishops’ Synodal Path

    Below the title:

    “It hurts us when we see how LGBT propaganda invokes your own wording,” say the bishops, “to fight both Christianity and everyone who recognizes the true anthropology based on the Bible and natural law.”

  5. Yeah, we kind of see how it turned out the last time the German (and I’m not being anti-teuton here) clergy had their own ideas about things.

    Is it something in the water?

  6. HvonBlumenthal says:

    It will be interesting to see what difference it will make after Card Marx steps down this year.

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