The way is clear for further work in the Synodal Committee

Bishops and Catholics Committee: Reform dialogue can continue

Bonn - The German bishops and the Central Committee of German Catholics want to continue their dialogue on reforms in the Church. They feel encouraged to do so after the recent meeting between a delegation of bishops and high-ranking Vatican representatives.

Published  on 25.03.2024 at 17:50  – 

Following recent talks in the Vatican, the German bishops and the Central Committee of German Catholics are looking forward with confidence to the continuation of the dialogue on reforms in the Church in Germany. The way is now clear for further work in the Synodal Committee, write the Chairman of the German Bishops' Conference, Georg Bätzing, and ZdK President Irme Stetter-Karp to the members of the committee. The letter is available to the Katholische Nachrichten-Agentur (KNA).

The Synodal Committee has only met once so far. The second meeting is planned for mid-June in Mainz. However, the bishops have yet to approve the committee's statutes. According to the letter, the bishops want to make up for this at the meeting of their Permanent Council on 22 April. The financial resources for the committee's work are to be channelled through an association, the foundation of which is apparently planned before Easter.

"Feedback with the Curia" agreed

The Synodal Committee is a result of the Synodal Path for the Future of the Catholic Church in Germany, which was launched by bishops and laypeople in 2019. Among other things, it is to prepare the establishment of a Synodal Council in which bishops and laypeople can jointly discuss and decide on important issues within the Church in Germany. The Vatican had repeatedly rejected this because it recognised a possible violation of canon law and the doctrine of the Church as a hierarchy in which the bishops and the Pope have ultimate responsibility.

During their exchange with high-ranking Vatican representatives last Friday in the Vatican, the delegation from the Bishops' Conference was able to clarify that the exact structure of the Synodal Council had not yet been discussed. "And they have assured the representatives of the Curia that they will ensure that the proposal complies with the Church's guidelines," the current letter states. "In addition to further discussions to deepen the dialogue, it has also been agreed that there will be feedback with the Curia during the further process of designing the Synodal Council." (KNA)