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‘We need time,’ Synod on Synodality organizers tell German-language media

AC Wimmer By AC Wimmer for CNA

Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich of Luxembourg, relator general of the Synod of Bishops, speaks at a news conference to present an update on the synod process at the Vatican Aug. 26, 2022. Looking on is Cardinal Mario Grech, secretary-general of the synod. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
CNA Newsroom, Feb 14, 2023 / 07:40 am (CNA).

A key organizer of the Synod on Synodality says the issue of the ordination of women in the Catholic Church was not the main topic of the world synod on synodality. However, if “synodality comes through,” there may be “other decisions to be made in the future,” Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich, SJ, told German diocesan media.

Speaking Sunday after the European Continental Assembly meeting in Prague Feb. 5–12, Hollerich said that if “this synodality comes through,” we will have “a way” of “making decisions in the Church,” CNA Deutsch, CNA’s German-language partner agency, reported.

The archbishop of Luxembourg — who serves as the general relator of the synod — stressed the world synod was about synodality and “not a synod on women’s ordination, nor a synod on homosexuality.”

Another key organizer made similar remarks in a separate interview on Sunday, reported CNA Deutsch.

Cardinal Mario Grech — who serves as secretary general of the world synod — told the German-language Swiss media outlet that synodality was “a gift of the Holy Spirit for the Church today” and that there were “no taboo subjects.”

Grech added: “As a Church, we think about how we can become more synodical. Once we are more synodal, we can better address certain issues. And I’m convinced: A synodal Church gives better answers to existential questions.”

In the same vein, Cardinal Hollerich told German Domradio on Feb. 12: “We need time. The Holy Spirit can work very quickly, but we mostly need time to understand, comprehend, and perceive the action of the Holy Spirit in our hearts and in the world.”

With a view to the meeting in Prague, Hollerich said: “It was the first time in Europe that we could speak so freely and that everyone could present their view and be heard with respect by others.”

Referring to the German participation at the continental assembly, the cardinal said: “The German [delegation] naturally tried to present the Synodal Way. Some countries discovered common ground, others were quite shocked.”

Hollerich said: “It was good for the German delegation to see the diversity of opinions; that we are in this particular situation and have to go together.” He added that “one should calmly proceed. And if something comes from the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit will bring it to a breakthrough.”

Pope Francis in January contrasted Germany’s “Synodaler Weg,” sometimes translated as the Synodal Path or Synodal Way, which is not a synod, with the universal Church’s Synod on Synodality.

The controversial German process is still expected to continue as planned by its organizers. The next, and what is anticipated to be the final, synodal assembly is scheduled to take place in Frankfurt in March.

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  1. In the same vein, Cardinal Hollerich told German Domradio on Feb. 12: “We need time. The Holy Spirit can work very quickly, but we mostly need time to understand, comprehend, and perceive the action of the Holy Spirit in our hearts and in the world.”

    See entry for Blasphemy.

  2. At one time as VA chaplain a Methodist chief of service said the Catholic Mass is a seance. His own denomination later ejected him from their body not for that, rather for myriad atheistic, idolatrous beliefs.
    Cardinals Hollerich SJ, Grech here reversing the usual stance, now playing good cop [Hollerich] bad cop [Grech] to convince everyone of their authentic spiritual concern for the Church and that the Holy Spirit works better as a whole body seated around a table, the Synod on Synodality structure. Grech inventing a new word for a new “synodical” Church [definition in progress].
    Formerly we had one member of the Mystical Body, Christ Jesus who made the decisions on right and wrong, good and evil, the commandments to be taught the world by the Apostles. Times change [apparently in dramatic fashion at this Vatican]. We now have something better than one Godly voice. We have many, many godly voices seated around the Synodal table channeling the spirit, sort of, this is analogy not a serious reflection like a seance.

  3. Of der Synodale Weg, Cardinal Hollerich refers to a catchall “diversity of opinions,” and announces that if “’this synodality comes through,’ we will have ‘a way’ of ‘making decisions in the Church.’”

    Two paused clarifications: (a) that part of the vademecum which warned, however anemically, against “passing opinions;” and (b) the difference between “moral judgments,” and “making decisions” as for what Cardinal Grech conflates (?) as “existential questions.”

    About the latter distinction, this (again) from the magisterium’s Veritatis Splendor:
    “A separation, or even an opposition [!], is thus established in some cases between the teaching of the precept, which is valid and general, and the norm of the individual conscience [!], which would in fact make the final DECISION [no longer a ‘MORAL JUDGMENT’] about what is good and what is evil. On this basis, an attempt is made to legitimize so-called ‘pastoral’ solutions contrary to [!] the teaching of the Magisterium, and to justify a ‘creative’ hermeneutic according to which the moral conscience is in no way obliged, in every case, by a particular negative precept [thou shalt not!]” (n. 56, CAPS added).

    Encouraged to hear needed clarifications about synods, “non-synod” participants(!), and the circular “Synod on Synodality.”

    Meanwhile Rome burns, and likewise much of what is left of Civilization now barely surviving on the vapors of the past–including the perennial Church where even Ordinatio Sacerdotalis (1994) is composted by our “disposal culture”—likely reduced to an “existential question”?

  4. It sounds to me like it is not the Holy Spirit who is on His way to straighten out Hollerich and the world, but Jesus Himself.

    Divine Mercy in My Soul, 1588
    In the Old Covenant I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My Merciful Heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. Before the Day of Justice I am sending the Day of Mercy.

    Be sure to receive Jesus’ recent, year 2000, gifts of Divine Mercy Sunday this coming April 16th!

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