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Catholic World News

German bishops empower lay voters in policy-making body

November 14, 2023

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CWN Editor's Note: On the “synodal committee,” set up by German Church leaders to implement the recommendations of the “Synodal Path,” decisions will require approval by two-thirds of the members—but not necessarily by two-thirds of the bishops on the committee.

At a November 11 meeting, the committee members voted to deny the bishops an effective blocking power in policy-setting votes. The voting procedures now directly challenge the Vatican’s insistence that bishops alone have the authority to set policies for their dioceses.

The committee includes Germany’s 27 diocesan bishops along with the same number of members appointed by the Central Committee of German Catholics, plus 20 other members elected by Synodal Path delegates. Thus bishops represent only 36% of the voters.

Four German bishops have declined to participate in the committee’s work.

The above note supplements, highlights, or corrects details in the original source (link above). About CWN news coverage.


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  • Posted by: Lucius49 - Nov. 14, 2023 9:30 PM ET USA

    It seems a majority of German bishops are no longer Catholic. This is the great crisis in the Church that certain bishops,and laity think the Church comes from them. It seems like the Pope has the same idea that he can alter the deposit of Faith re the structure of the Church, Opposed by Bishop S, he’s removed unjustly. Opposing this in Germany is the New Beginning Initiative. It calls the Synodal Committee “a scandalous illegitimate act in every respect which we as Catholic Christians oppose.”