Speech of Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Prefect to the German bishops

The complete text, in English, of the November 18, 2022, address by Cardinal Ladaria Ferrer, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, to the German bishops during their recent ad limina visit.

Curia officials -- Cardinal Luis Ladaria, prefect of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith; Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state; and Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Dicastery for Bishops ñ meet Nov. 18, 2022, with the bishops of Germany making their "ad limina" visits to the Vatican. Other heads of Vatican dicasteries also attended the meeting across the street from the Vatican at the Augustinianum Institute for Patristic Studies. (CNS photo/Vatican Media)

Editor’s note: The following is the full text of the speech given on Nov. 18, 2022, by His Eminence Luis Francisco Cardinal Ladaria Ferrer, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, to the German bishops during their recent ad limina visit. Translated from the original Italian by William J. Melcher.


There is one passage from the Letter of the Holy Father to the Pilgrim People of God in Germany [dated June 29, 2019] that establishes the fundamental perspective of this short speech of mine. Pope Francis writes in paragraph 9 of the Letter just cited: “The universal Church lives in and of the particular Churches, just as the particular Churches live and flourish in and from the universal Church. If they find themselves separated from the entire ecclesial body, they weaken, rot, and die. Hence the need always to ensure that communion with the whole body of the Church is alive and effective. This helps us overcome the anxiety that shuts us in upon ourselves and our idiosyncrasies. It enables us, beyond all that seems to prevent it, to look into the eyes of, to listen to and to accompany those who are on the side of the road. This can sometimes be seen in a small gesture, like the father of the prodigal son, who leaves the doors open so that, when he returns, the son can enter without difficulty. This is not the same as refusing to walk, to move forward, to change; nor does it mean arguing or disagreeing. It is simply the consequence of knowing ourselves part of a larger body that wants us, waits for us and needs us, and that we too want and wait for and need. It is the delight of feeling ourselves part of the holy People of God, faithful and patient.”

The following words are now meant precisely to awaken in each one of us this awareness of being a constituent part of a larger body and that just such a communion with all the other members of the Church can make possible—more than a thousand other gestures or brilliant declarations can—the hospitality that is so necessary today toward the person who is left on the side of the road.

And truly, there are so many men and women today who no longer feel “at home” in the house of the Lord and remain outside of it. Then there are also many men and women who feel deeply betrayed by the men and women of the Catholic Church and no longer associate with us. Above all there are, finally, many men and women who no longer place any trust in us Bishops. And there is good reason for this to happen. Our thoughts turn here immediately to the painful page [in recent Church history] of incidents of sexual abuse and, more generally, of the abuse of power committed by the clergy and to all the times when in such cases our response as Church did not measure up to the situation. In this regard we will never tire of asking the victims of this abuse for forgiveness, offering them whatever help we can; at the same time, we will never tire of renewing our resolution each day, so that incidents of abuse against minors and abuses of power by men and women of the Church will never have to happen again. In this respect, I can assure you that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith is committed with all its might and with the utmost conscientiousness to ensuring that the punishments foreseen by the Code of Canon Law will be imposed on those clerics who have disgraced themselves by such abominable crimes.

From this perspective it appears that the Church in Germany is making an extremely praiseworthy effort internally to establish safety protocols so as to avoid all abuse against minors and any other form of violence against adult persons by clerics and more generally within ecclesial institutions. This commitment has assumed its particular concrete form in the Synodal Way which was started in 2019 by the Church in Germany and which just in recent months has reached a particularly important phase.

Now, precisely in the spirit of that “knowing [that we are all a constituent] part of a larger body that wants us, waits for us and needs us, and that we too want and wait for and need” that is mentioned in the above-cited words from the Letter of the Holy Father to the Pilgrim People in Germany, it is my task, as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, to present to you, Venerable Brother Bishops, five specific concerns that arise from an attentive reading of the texts discussed to date within your Synodal Way.

The first concern has to do with the literary genre of the texts. Since you are not conducting a Synod, but rather a synodal way, no final document seems to be expected for now. But might it not be opportune to think about something like a final document of the Synodal Way or about something similar? Such a question becomes inevitable as soon as one notices that in many passages of the texts of the Synodal Way there are general statements about present situations in the holy people of God, references alluding to scientific and sociological findings, the use of exegetical results that are still debated and debatable, unhesitating declarations about the end of metaphysics and the eclipse of all truth, generic protocols for the possible public identification [riconoscimento] of Church teaching [i.e. deciding democratically what is doctrine and what is not], and finally references to unnamed men and women theologians with no way to identify them. Such things may be very clear to those who compiled the texts and to qualified readers, but if we are part of a larger body and these texts (with the already available translations of them into other languages) begin to have a worldwide circulation, it does not seem out of place to propose a final document or something analogous from which might emerge a way of proceeding that is more linear and less dependent on statements that have not been fully clarified.

The second concern has to do with the connection made between the structure of the Church and the phenomenon of clerical abuse of minors and other phenomena of abuse. The argument proposed by the texts, because of their length also and the necessary repetitions on several occasions, does not seem to consider accurately the specific nature of the ecclesial body. It goes without saying that everything that can be done to avoid more cases of the abuse of minors by clerics should be done, but this must not involve [1] a reduction of the mystery of the Church to a simple authoritative institution or [2] a precautionary consideration of the Church as an organization that structurally causes abuse, which must be placed as soon as possible under the control of super-controllers. From this point of view, the greater risk of many operational suggestions in the texts of the Synodal Way is that they would result in the loss of one of the major achievements of Vatican Council II, namely its clear teaching on the mission of the bishops and therefore of the particular Church.

The third concern has to do with the view of human sexuality according to Church doctrine and in particular the way in which it is expressed in the 1992 Catechism of the Catholic Church. The general impression that could emerge in this regard from reading the texts of the Synodal Way is that almost nothing of the Church’s doctrine in this area can be salvaged. Everything would have to be changed. How can we forget the impact that all this has on so many of the faithful who listen to the voice of the Church and strive to follow its directions in their lives? Or are they perhaps supposed to think that they have done everything wrong until now?

No one should assume too easily that human sexuality is something transparently in front of us, without the ambivalence involved in every human gesture, and even more so in every human gesture related to the practice of sexuality. Greater caution would have been desirable on the part of the compilers of the texts of the Assembly of the Synodal Way, and some down-payment of trust in the vision of sexuality that the Magisterium has developed in recent decades. Safeguarding the essentially generative and generational character of the human being remains one of the great prophetic tasks of the community of believers in this time of the progressive commercialization of human existence.

The fourth concern has to do with the role of women in the Church and in particular the question of women’s access to priestly ordination. In this case, too, the texts of the Synodal Way appear to fall short of a hermeneutic shared by the Magisterial positions, reducing the whole thing to the following observation: in the Catholic Church the fundamental dignity of women is not respected, because they cannot be admitted to priestly ordination. The position of the Magisterium is in fact more specific. The decisive point in this regard is not that in the Catholic Church women cannot be admitted to priestly ordination; the point is that it is necessary to accept the truth whereby “the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women” (Saint John Paul II, Ordinatio sacerdotalis, 4.)

Here we find the full meaning of this sense of being part of a larger body, a body that is not disjointed, but a body which, by the explicit will of the Lord Jesus, has its leader in Peter and his successors. I would like to add immediately that the final resolutions of the Synodal Way to try to address to the Holy Father Francis the request to reopen this question do certainly tone down the highly polemical tone of the specific text about the access of women to priestly ordination, and for this we can only be grateful. Of course, once again the question remains about the ultimate purpose of these texts of the Synodal Way. Our fraternal suggestion remains that of arriving at a synthesis that is more sober and decisively more in tune with the “knowing that we are constituent part of a larger body” that is the guiding theme of this present speech.

The fifth and final concern has to do with the exercise of the Church’s Magisterium and in particular the exercise of the episcopal teaching authority. What is said in the conciliar Constitution Dei Verbum remains almost forgotten in the texts of the Synodal Way, in particular the question of Tradition: handing on the faith thanks precisely to the apostolic succession: “But in order to keep the Gospel forever whole and alive within the Church, the Apostles left bishops as their successors, ‘handing over’ to them ‘the authority to teach in their own place’” (DV, 7).

Before the writing of the New Testament corpus, there was in fact the community of men and women disciples of the Lord Jesus, which was called to bring to all the men and women on earth the message of the Good News about God’s love for all. This community, however, is an ordered community, founded on a head which is Peter and placed under the direction of the Twelve, to whom belongs specifically the task of authenticating the testimony of the other men and women disciples of the Lord. Over the course of the centuries, this order in the diakonia [service] rendered by all to the Kingdom of Heaven was made possible precisely thanks to the presence and mission of the bishops and in a special way thanks to the presence and mission of the Bishop of Rome. Precisely for this reason, to them belongs a special task in accompanying all the faithful to live charity in truth and the truth in charity. And although it is true that the Magisterium is under the judgment of the Word, it is also true that the Word comes alive and resonates as a living thing precisely thanks to the exercise of the Magisterium of the bishops and of the Bishop of Rome in particular. How comforting it is for every bishop to know that he is always cum Petro et sub Petro [with Peter and under Peter]!

Therefore, it is not possible to assimilate into this delicate and decisive task in the life of the Catholic Church other ministries that are present in it, for example, that of the theologians and of experts in other sciences.

Revered Brother Bishops,

these are the concerns which I wanted to bring to your attention in the spirit of this knowing that we are all a constituent part of a larger body. The universal Church needs the Church in Germany, just as the Church in Germany needs the universal Church. But we must want to “need” one another, we must want to wait for one another, we must want this communion of life and pilgrimage. And truly, this is precisely what is required by your sincere and most profound desire to be more and more a Church in which all can feel at home, in which all can feel that they are part of a family, a Church in which God reveals to everyone His face as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, especially now after the dramatic pages that we have experienced because of the evidence of terrible crimes of abuse committed by clerics against minors and of the handling of these cases by some bishops that was not always equal to the gravity of the situation.

May the Lord bless our will to need one another.

• Related at CWR: “Return to the spirit of the Acts of the Apostles”: Address of Marc Cardinal Ouellet, Prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, to the German Bishops during their ad limina visit on November 18, 2022.

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  1. On Cardinal Ladaria’s first concern–the absence of a synodal-way document…Might it be that the game plan is precisely to fully replace documents with a fluid process? As with Marshall McLuhan in the 1960s, the process IS the message?

    Which is to suggest that mismanagement of the physical sexual abuse scandal has MUTATED into an ecclesial grooming process which, if things continue to roll along unabated, can be construed as “consensual”! Is this the meaning of being “Catholic in a different way?” The unrecorded corporate boardroom get-along-go-along mindset? Transplanted as a sort of non-verbal, signaled, not-quite-explicit, ecclesial parody of unopposed (consensual!) group sex?

    The extinction of YES and NO. The extinction of documents. The extinction of clarity. The extinction of intellect and content. Even the extinction of Vatican II and past Church councils with their obsolete production of documents and such. The damnation of the written word.

    How to deal with patterns of signaling? How to do this without being lured into creating martyrs to the malignant German agenda? Historically, often it has been the ideas that are anathematized, and usually not the persons (Joachim of Fiore, the Syllabus, Americanism, etc.). Maybe at least this approach in some form, with or without the any final synodal-way document? Perhaps the global synodal czar, Luxembourg’s feckless Cardinal Hollerich, is fitted with a spinal implant? Or is fully replaced by someone capable of encapsulating/ redirecting the German non-synod within a credible (remotely possible) Synod on Synodality? Rather than being infiltrated and sabotaged. Maybe even the nuclear option: questions for the Federal Government of Germany about which dioceses still qualify as Catholic for the church tax? Or, maybe the cooler heads in Germany will prevail.

    Amateur saboteurs in red hats, and now a layman, the ZdK’s Thomas Sternberg, muttering something about a cleverly evasive “design” in Germany. And, the global, plebiscite, synodal paper trail most recently fondled, massaged, and messaged by a gang of so-called “experts.” Enough of this carnival shell game.

    But, Cardinal Ladaria’s letter and that of Cardinal Ouellet, plus the atypically clear interview of Pope Francis with America Magazine, all three are remarkably mature. A few adults still in the room. Hopefully, in a year or two, not forgotten or reduced to cosmetics.

  2. You can’t save from prodigality by transferring into another prodigality; so waiting for the transference to come to pass in the future is not hope.

    Giving endorsement of the transience under an idiomatic “synodal way” is falsehood.

    Charity covers many sins but charity can’t fix resisting the truth.

    You can address errors in truth in charity but you must also address the error in truth directly not in equivocations and deflections -else you contribute to the errors and the resisting.

    Resisting truth carries with it tinges of and slips into envy and so holding out “the Father’s loving embrace” as something awaiting and inviting the envious as relief, repair and reward, is a work of the devil, very knotty.

  3. I fear that one day the Catholic Church in Germany will wake up to find that she has hundreds of bishops but no laity. Followers of a Divine Person on a cross will be none existent – especially when this Divine Person invites Germans to do the same i.e. to pick up their crosses.

  4. Card Ladaria targets intellectual dismissal of truth [absolutes], consequent questioning of Apostolic doctrine, Laity identification [riconoscimento] and their rightful decisions. A plebeian Church resembling Francis’ inverted triangle ecclesiology.
    Although we may find reason for hope of Vat rejection of the German Synodaler Weg declaration [addressed here by Ladaria] in Pope Francis’ recent interview with America Mag, Pope Francis nonetheless stated in that interview, “A Catholic cannot think either-or and reduce everything to polarization. It’s about ‘both-and, and combining differences.’ Still, it isn’t at all clear what Pope Francis means by ‘combing differences.’ One can’t combine contradictions” (Eduardo Echeverria Signs of Contradiction TCT).
    Echeverria quotes theologian, Christoph Theobald, S.J. who perceives “advances in pastoral orientation of doctrine as historicist in perspective. That it collapses the dogmatic distinction of unchanging truth and its formulations into a historical context”. This, the key in its converse sense of understanding the dilemma of the turn from resourcement to pastoral advancement.
    Whether Francis will decide to intervene to direct the universal Synod on Synodality in the direction it must alluded to in Card Ladaria’s criticism of the Synodaler Weg radical transformation of Catholicism into a plebeian rather than hierarchal Church is in serious doubt.

    • What! Of course it’s clear (!) what is meant by “A Catholic cannot think either-or and reduce EVERYTHING to polarization. It’s about ‘both-and, and combining differences.”

      Yes, there are nuanced contradistinctions as well as contradictions…this subtlety is part of theology. But, now, does the “both-and” thingy mean—philosophically and rationally!—that there no longer are ANY contradictions? Does it mean that the non-demonstrable first principle of non-contradiction no longer exists?

      Wait, rather than either theological or even philosophical, what it means is really biological! You know, like Hollerich’s “third option” of active homosexuality, there’s the fourth option—it means that the dormant neighbor girl can wake up only half-pregnant! No either-or stuff here; no polarization!

      For a minute, Susie was really worried! But now the new paradigm of Mad Magazine’s Alfred E. Newman (replacing the sane John Henry Newman!): “What, me worry?”

      • Yin Yang, very ancient [prior even to the Jesuits and Jorge Bergoglio] although not nearly as ancient as Zarathustra perceived a duality in reality. That something can be good and bad is not a contradiction rather a unifying duality, that moral good or moral evil is simply a perception. Zhou Dunyi [presumed founder] would have been proud.
        Zarathustra, who believed good and evil were natural, ultimately reconcilable elements, would have been ecstatic. Perhaps nearly as much as the Synodaler Weg folks are. As Solomon says in Qoheleth, there’s nothing new under the sun.
        Although, what’s discomforting is Lucifer, aka Satan held the same premise that evil is good and good is evil precedes them all. Look where he ended up.

    • “combining differences”

      If you are pro divorce that’s fine. If you are against divorce, that’s fine too.

      If you are pro-abortion that’s ok. If you are anti-abortion that’s ok too.

      Let’s have a hodge podge of the good and the bad and consider them all good.

  5. Imagine being an orthodox Catholic in some of these German dioceses? What would you do when the bishops “in full communion and good standing” with Rome teach and promote things completely opposed to the Catechism? What does one do? Eastern Catholic? SSPX? What?! Rome has a responsibility to the faithful in these dioceses who want to uphold the Catholic faith.

    • Andrew: Rome is not Rome and Peter is not Peter.

      “Sblood, there is something in this more than natural, if philosophy could find it out.”

      Hamlet Act II. Scene II.

  6. VATICAN II gave itself a space and a frame in which to deliver what the Church wanted to say according to apostolic tradition. The particular space and frame were not about condemnations per se; they are about tutelage and guide. And even in that the Council did not make itself the Church’s exclusive reference point. While the Church remains the same Church now with a unique additional access to its own concilium, with fresh draughts still streaming, she can draw upon any of her gifts whether from within the Council or otherwise. The Church is free to declare anathemas where and when it is necessary to do that, both in general and in respect of the Council itself.

    There is another fortuitous lesson here for me, as I believe it would be for others who are listening. This sacred space and frame that the Council has marked out, taken, occupied and made use of as example, is not outdone by time; where indeed this also holds true for the Church’s tradition as a whole and her doctrines. Therefore it is impossible to overlay a contrary concept that “time being greater than space”, things indicated in faith, hope and love, can be put into a suspension for the sake of the whole that is not determined yet. Groundless delay is not a discipline of formation.

  7. Well, to me Cardinal Ferra is quite specific and clear in what he points out with brotherly love. Some reconsiderations and changes need to be made and as he points out and describes. It’s all about getting to and expressing the truth; and truth is what the Catholic church is about.

  8. “If they find themselves separated from the entire ecclesial body, they weaken, rot, and die”

    Well, there you have it folks, the final diagnosis as to why the German church is sick, rotting (think gangrene all over) and will soon be dead. But for the moment we smell only the stench.

  9. The most damning thing I took from Cardinal Ladaria’s “concerns”is how did these German men ever get past their first year in seminary, much less receive ordination, and then elevation to the episcopacy? This is Catholicism 101, Philosophy 101, and a lot of other 101s.

    • Excellent remark, Tom. The low level of any sort of theological and philosophical knowledge indicates that their formation was horrible (in many cases, it most likely was very deficient) and/or they just don’t care, having sold their souls to a false religion. Either way, its a dumpster fire (Google Translate tells me that is “Müllcontainer Feuer” in German).

      • You mention “knowledge”….
        One of the reforms of Trent was the establishment of seminaries, such that priests could no longer parade about in their mis-formation and actual illiteracy. But, years hence, will history will show that in post-modernity and after 500 years we have simply replaced real illiteracy with functional illiteracy and ideology?

        Who needs knowledge when you can conjure a plebiscite?

        And, Germany means being not only being functionally illiterate, but also being stupidly fascinated with one’s own bubble-monologue: the synodal “style” of being “Catholic, but in a different way” (Bats-sing’s lyric). To be clear, the “synodal way” means fully replacing “knowledge” and reason with lock-step intuitionism under the premise (still a premise!) that “knowledge,” itself, is nothing more than a superstructure for domination and oppression. Is such the meaning of the “paradigm shift”? No paradigms at all!

        So, yours truly is wondering about ships passing in the night, and whether written addresses mean the needed course change, or historically are they now simply papers thrown in the winds that blow?

        Double-speak and pre-literate/tribal stupidity seem contagious, having already spread to the sin-nod command posts of master-debate choreographers Grech and Hollerich.

  10. Yea verily, another reading of Cardinal Ladaria’s address highlights the five-part agenda emanating not far from the Black Forest of Germania. To summarize:

    Anonymous findings of sociology betoken a flippant elementary school essay on navel-gazing!
    Responding to sexual abuses by undermining the very structure of the Church betokens a tail (double entendre intended) wagging the dog,
    Imposing far-reaching sexual options replaces clear answers with a multiple-choice test/testes,
    Women ordination betokens a unisex celebration of gender theory, while short-term ordination of men betokens a time-share notion for all commitments including marriage,
    And a synodal plebiscite severing of the Apostolic Succession betokens a broad cultural hatred of any fatherhood.

    • This is for Peter D. Beaulieu with thanks.

      The allowances being made for the Germans can be an expression of an extent to which Pope Francis would apply the 4 dicta in Evangelii Gaudium. At the same time, however, it can reveal the anarchy in them.

      Some “part” is being made to prevail over something else seen as “the whole”. That is the obverse of the related dictum.

      The decision would be offered for the sake of unity avoiding conflict yet the divisions remain once the allowances are given. A further aspect to that is when there is a repentance and conversion away from what the Germans propose and are living -it can’t reconcile with the colossus, it defines the conflict in truth.

      A reality that is being seen as not existing presently, i.e., the one that is sought by the Germans, is accepted as more important than the idea that the Germans should not proceed. Of course, not proceeding ought to come out to a substantive injunction not a mere “idea”! But at the same time, the reductive idea itself is being subordinated to other ideas and related injunctions for the sake of the said reality or some outcome that will be taken at some time to be germane or feasible or relevant, still to be honed -that are “not ideas” but nonetheless imperatives. Whereas the “lesser” ideas are subject to amorphous denunciation, eg., “the out of step, no longer helpful” and too injunctive.

      The German “synodal way” issue is not a “space” issue, time has come to name it for what it is! Who is the virgin with the oil and the trimmed lamp!

      Similarly, if Pope Francis actually said and meant to “legalize homosexual civil union”, the same analysis would result in respect of this particular evil; but it does not make wrong right, it makes wrong ever more evil than the evil persisting, adding evil to evil.

      • Yes, in earlier postings yours truly has posed the following questions with regard to the four “principles” floated in Evangelii Gaudium. Not necessarily wrong, but also very enabling(?):

        First, when is “realities are more important than ideas [concepts?]” at risk of NOMINALISM (“pastoral” exemptions from moral norms that are never explicitly denied)?
        Then, when is “time is greater than space” at risk of HISTORICISM (the “paradigm shift,” not unlike Islamic “abrogation”)?
        Also, when is “unity prevails over conflict” at risk of CLERICALISM (the synodal quartet of Marx, Bats-sing, Grech and Hollerich, now plus their 24 “experts”)?
        And, when is “the whole is greater than the part” at risk of GLOBALISM (displacement of Vertitatis Splendor/moral absolutes with the Fundamental Option, Proportionalism/ Consequentialism)?

  11. Of the German “genre” we read: it does not seem out of place to propose a final document or something analogous from which might emerge a way of proceeding that is more linear and less dependent on statements that have not been fully clarified.” About both the German non-synod and a syndodal/polyhedral Church tilting to confound and dismantle even moral theology…

    FIRST, as a novice, but with time on my hands, may yours truly humbly INQUIRE whether the synodal method of horizontally “listening, compiling, aggregating and synthesizing” is a promiscuous misapplication of the method used by Hans Urs von Balthasar in the world of thought? And, further, whether this possible synodal strategy repeats the exposed earlier strategy to coopt Pope Benedict, with a falsified endorsement of a recent series of books (2018)? See https://www.catholicworldreport.com/2018/03/17/letter-reveals-benedicts-praise-for-francis-booklets-came-with-previously-unmentioned-caveats/

    SECOND. von Balthasar broke new ground by COMBINING literary, philosophical and theological genres (!)—versus the alternative to the “monism” as any overspecialized “narrowing of perspective” in the quest for truth. Wrote von Balthasar: “Just as literary theory in our opinion goes beyond philosophy, so philosophy goes beyond art; both of them (like theology) transcend toward historically concrete existence. Precisely this point toward which all three transcend [not collage!] shall be the geometric place of these studies.”

    THIRD, but, rather than a polyhedral Church apparently going sideways, quite possibly dissolving even the radiant and universal natural law at the central core of each concrete person, the reviewer goes on: “the individual image—which must never be frozen into a fixed ‘form’ (Gestalt) [very similar wording used by Pope Francis…] in this context—must provide the point [!] of departure in which the efforts of all philologists, philosophers, and theologians begin CONCENTRICALLY [caps added!], as it were.” (Whereas the non-circular and polyhedral Church model discards a central point surrounded by a circumference of equidistant points.)

    FOURTH, still more (patience!) from von Balthasar: “The ‘contradiction’ of the entire dialectic of idealism…, like the ‘contradiction’ between nature and spirit…is mythically and concretely the crossing of the beams of THE CROSS. [and] ‘For when the center has been lost in a circle [as in ‘polyhedral’ moral ambiguity and evasion?], Bonaventure says ‘it can only be found through two lines at right angles’”

    (Above citations from Alois M. Hass, “Hans Ur von Balthasar’s ‘Apocalypse of the German Soul,’” in David L. Schindler, editor, “Balthasar: His Life and Work,” Ignatius, 1991.)

    INQUIRY, so, (a) While the German non-synod is a derailment—to what extent does the synodal strategy itself also move us away from the historically concrete reality (!) and CONTRADICTION of the CROSS, by “walking together” while feeding on a salt-free diet? And, (b) while coopting the universal Communio theologians (Benedict above, and now von Balthasar misapplied?, and later de Lubac?) into the Concilium faction? Just an uncredentialed lay “dubia”… Surely the twenty-four “experts” reporting to the homosexual-signaling Cardinal Hollerich can harmonize a consensus answer…

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