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Ousted German bishop was victim of liberal pressure, magazine article argues

January 28, 2014

Writing in Crisis magazine, Marie Meaney argues that the removal of Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst from the Diocese of Limburg, Germany, was prompted primarily by the hostility of liberal clerics than by the bishop's spending habits.

Bishop Tebartz-van Elst was removed from his post in October, when the Vatican announced that "a situation has arisen in which Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst cannot, at the present moment, continue to exercise his episcopal ministry.” The bishop had been accused of lavish spending on his personal residence and a related diocesan office building. In November, he paid a fine to avoid prosecution for filing false testimony about his personal spending.

However, Meaney reports that public pressure on the bishop arose after he removed liberal clerics from diocesan posts. The Crisis magazine account notes the keen tensions in Germany between loyal Catholics and dissenting liberals.


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  • Posted by: jg23753479 - Jan. 28, 2014 1:56 PM ET USA

    Regardless of the exact reason, his departure is not to be lamented. Same goes for many other bishops around the world who continue to live in palatial splendor totally out of sync with their vocation. It really doesn't matter what the political hue of their critics may be.