Why Germany’s peak lay body is demanding blessings for homosexual couples ahead of the family synod in Rome – and others are attempting the opposite in a “Filial Appeal”

Screenshot 2015-05-09 at 11.24.55 PMAlthough it is still a few months away, tensions are rising further ahead of the synod of the family. Today, the peak body of German lay Catholics, the aptly named “Central Committee of German Catholics” (ZDK), called for the blessing of homosexual couples. As part of a resolution about “Building bridges between the magisterium and life (lebenswelt) – Family and Church in the World of today”, the ZDK calls for

  • a change of and further development of Church teaching,
  • including an acceptance of artificial birth control,
  • a re-definition of the words “marriage” and “family” to include non-married and,
  • apparently, homosexual couples (who are to be “blessed”).
  • Furthermore, an admission of remarried divorcees to communion.
  • …and a lot more. Here is the full text of the resolution in the original German version.

The stated purposes of the ZDK include: To represent Catholic interests, be a voice of the lay faithful, and make suggestions for apostolic works. (Source) The “Central Committee” is mostly paid for by the Association of the German Dioceses: In 2010, about 2 million Euros – that’s 84 percent of the total annual budget – came from their coffers, which in turn are tax payer-supported.

Screenshot 2015-05-09 at 11.24.17 PMAt the same time, over 228,000 people have so far signed a petition called “Filial Appeal” to Pope Francis asking him to uphold the Catholic teaching on the family and marriage against the very “further delevopment” that the ZDK calls for. The document fears “widespread confusion arising from the possibility that a breach has been opened within the Church that would accept adultery—by permitting divorced and then civilly remarried Catholics to receive Holy Communion—and would virtually accept even homosexual unions”. The “Filial Appeal”, which is based in Rome, appears to be a collective action by several traditional and conservative movements. The only information I could find by doing some basic research was on their website.

We are in for one hot autumn, and it is only just spring here in the Northern hemisphere.

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