Benedict XVI asks the German Church for a testimony of faith to stop the exodus of the faithful


It is at least the third time in recent months the Pope Emeritus has made statements regarding the situation of the Church in his country.

Newsdesk (July 27, 2021, 6:45 PM, Gaudium Press) Pope Emeritus Benedict has once again made statements about the extremely difficult situation of the Church in his country.

Last April, Msgr. Georg Ganswein, Benedict’s personal secretary, told Alfa and Omega’s María Martínez López that “Benedict XVI is aware of the situation in his homeland. He realizes and recognizes the lack of unity in many fundamental aspects of the faith. Unfortunately, a unified approach is lacking in the German episcopate, which requires clarification as soon as possible to avoid severe consequences for the faith and the Church in Germany.”

Last May 20, Gaudium Press reported the Pope Emeritus’ correspondence with a seminary in Czestochowa, as reported by Die Tagestpost, which invited him to celebrate the 70th anniversary of that institution of study. In the letter, Benedict stated that the good news from that seminary brought “great joy to my home. How wonderful it is to see flourishing in Poland what is withering in Germany.”

Here now, his statements in the August issue of the German magazine Herder Korrespondenz, on the 70th anniversary of his priestly ordination.

“In the institutions of the Church – hospitals, schools, Caritas – many people involved in key positions do not share the internal mission of the Church. Therefore, they often obscure the character of this institution.” He added, “as long as the institutional texts of the Church speak only with its officialism and not with its heart and spirit, the exodus of the world from the faith will continue.”

Pope Benedict is aware of the terrible statistics that the German Church presented in 2020, recording more than 220,000 apostasies in the year, among other critical data.

Following his train of thought, Benedict considers it relevant to “expect a true and personal testimony of faith from the spokespersons of the Church” in Germany.

The trip to Germany in 2011

In his 2011 trip to his homeland in Freiburg, Benedict spoke about the tendency to give “more importance to organization and institutionalization” than to the “vocation and openness of the Church to God.” He urged for a Church that separates itself from worldliness. The Church “to fulfill its mission, must, as to say, be separated from the world,” the Pope Emeritus stressed at the time.

Today, Benedict makes statements along the same lines and asks the German Church to move toward “freedom of faith.” On doctrinal developments, Benedict also said that these must “develop within and outside the faith and not beside it.”

In short, less spirit of the world, more faith. Always have faith as a guide, and never abandon it, especially when making doctrinal developments.

It is impossible not to link Benedict XVI’s statements with the severe doctrinal drifts into which the so-called German Synodal Way is engaging. And how it is a cause of concern for the universal Church.

With information from CNA and ACIStampa

Compiled by Ena Alfaro

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