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Saturday, October 21, 2017

Luther not really a heretic - Reformation was a work of the Holy Spirit

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Galantino's Luther-praise

On 19 October, Bishop Nunzio Galantino, the general secretary of the Italian Bishops' Conference, visited personally by Pope Francis himself in his former bishopric and appointed by him, declared at a Reformation meeting at the Pontifical Lateran University:

"The Reformation initiated by Martin Luther 500 years ago was a work of the Holy Spirit."
At the same time he absolved Luther from all the blame for the division of Latin Christendom:

"Luther himself did not consider himself the author of the Reformation when he wrote:" While I have slept, God has reformed the church."

Probably the most brazen portrayal of the events since Luther's own.

A section on the Pope's praise of Wesley

Then!

In the edition published today, the Roman Jesuit paper, La Civiltà Cattolica (issue 4016) deals with the question whether Martin Luther was "really" a heretic. Author of the essay "Martin Luther, 500 years after" is the Jesuit Giancarlo Pani.

Pani showed himself as a Jesuit "street corner lawyer" (Roberto de Mattei) when, shortly before the beginning of the first Bishop's Synod on the Family, he promised recognition of divorce and second. Officially the agenda was, of course, "admission of remarried divorced to the sacraments". Pani claimed that the church had already known divorce and second in history ("Venetian Second"). The message to the Synodal fathers? Cardinal Kasper does not demand anything new. On October 7, 2014, historian Roberto de Mattei rebutted the story of the "Venetian Second".

More to follow!

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Professor sacked for signing Correctio Filialis

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Stift Heiligenkreuz: Professor dismissed because he asked Pope for the affirmation of the church teaching.

Cardinal Burke, Professor Stark and a monk of Heiligenkreuz....

"New cleansing of the critics of Amoris laetitia: Professor dismissed. [...]

The dismissal of Professor Stark is not to be read as a reaction of the progressive hierarchy to the criticism of a conservative lecturer, but rather as a struggle between the neo-conservative faction, which proves to be ultramontane and over-zealous to obey the Pope everywhere and the traditional world , which does not hesitate to correct even the actions and omissions of a pope if they are contrary to the Gospel and Tradition. The case of Professor Stark adds to the dismissal of Professor Josef Seifert from the Institute of Philosophy of the Archdiocese of Granada, which was decided by local bishop Francisco Javier Martinez. In this case, too, the offence was: lack of enthusiasm for Amoris laetitia. "

On October 19, 2017, Il Foglio commented on the dismissal of Professor Thomas Heinrich Stark, a signatory of the Correctio filialis against the spread of heresies, who taught at the Philosophical and Theological College of Benedict XVI. of the Cistercian monastery of Heiligenkreuz in Austria. Rector, Father Karl Wallner and Major Chancellor Abbot Maximilian Heim, on 15 October, dissociated themselves in a public statement from the Correctio and a "Guest professor". The name of Prof. Stark was not mentioned. On 18 October the students of the university were informed by the board of the Institute of Philosophy, that Prof. Stark's examinations were being invigilated by Prof. P. Marian Gruber. The distancing and dismissal of Prof. Stark was justified by the fact that cum Petro et sub Petro has been regarded as a special characteristic "since their foundation in 1802".

The late Cardinal Carlo Caffarra said ten months ago:

"Only a blind man can deny that with Amoris laetitia the greatest confusion rules in the church."

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Pope is said to have criticized Cardinal Schönborn over Islam

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On the subject of "Islamization", there is no contradiction between Pope Francis and Cardinal Christoph Schönborn: The spokesman of the Archdiocese of Vienna, Michael Prüller, pointed out on Saturday. The occasion for the statement was the publication of the news magazine, "profil" which, in its forthcoming issue (Monday), quotes Pope Francis as saying: "I have a different approach to Islamization from your Cardinal." This the Pope had recently said, according to "profil", to a "small group of Catholics from Austria". "It seems to me that there is a misunderstanding. What the Pope said at a private audience about Islamization coincides with Cardinal Schönborn's view," commented Schönborn’s spokesman Prüller.

According to “profil” the Pope said that he did not believe in "misunderstood tolerance", but his greatest concern was not the spread of Islam itself but the "indifferent attitude" of Catholics to their own faith. "Cardinal Schönborn could also have said this," said the dry commentary of Prüller. Either the Pope was given a distorted picture of the attitude of the Austrian bishops or the Pope had been grossly misunderstood, Prüller surmised further. "After all the, in reality, the content of the positions of the Pope and Cardinal are consistent which does not very cause great upset".

In this context, Prüller referred to the missionary spirit, which is a priority for the Cardinal. In interviews a year ago, Cardinal Schönborn said: "Europe's Christian heritage is in danger because Europeans have squandered it, and it has nothing to do with Islam or even the refugees, and it is clear that many Islamists like our weakness but they are not responsible for our weakness. We Europeans ourselves are ... The chance for a Christian renewal of Europe lies with us: when we look to Christ, spread his Gospel and deal with our fellow men, even the stranger, as if they are in our heart - in love and responsibility. " And: "We do not need to arm ourselves against other religions in Europe, but we need again a lively Christendom.



Cathcon: The Archdiocese of Vienna spinning faster than Peter Mandelson

Friday, October 20, 2017

Patriarch: Pontificate of Francis is radical

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The relationship between Pope Francis and the Greek Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I is considered friendly. Now the Patriarch has expressed himself-and for the exercise of office of the Pope.

The Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I describes the pontificate of Pope Francis as "radical". In an Italian interview with prominent persons who have met Francis, he was explicitly asked whether he regarded the Papal term of office as "revolutionary". "The secular world may speak of a 'revolution', but we prefer the term 'radical'," said the honorary head of Orthodox Christianity in the interview published on the Vatican Insider Internet portal. Etymologically, the word refers to a return to the roots or the essence of the Gospel.

There was nothing more radical than a God who created the world out of love, became flesh, and identified with the weakest, according to the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople. "There is nothing more radical than a God who judges the people to eat thirsty water and hungry." Every Christian, and every clergyman, was called upon to act according to these "radical truths." Pope Francis reminded the faithful.

Spontaneous blessings for the Pope
The patriarch has called Francis his brother. Their relationship could not include the doctrinal and theological differences between their churches, which were formed by a thousand years of separation. But the personal dimension of their relationship plays an important role in the path of reconciliation between the Catholic and the Orthodox Church, according to Bartholomaios.

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Cardinal celebrates Mass for Divali

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"Do not let this lamp go out. We must pray that we do not become 'ditched boats', but people of integrity. "This is the message that Cardinal Maurice Piat gave yesterday during the Mass said at Sainte-Croix on the occasion of the feast Divali.


The Cardinal also stressed the need to pray for Mauritian families. "Do not let the winds of egoism and corruption put us in the dark. "This ceremony, organized by the Indo Mauritian Catholic Association (IMCA), saw the presence of several personalities, including Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth and his deputy, Ivan Collendavelloo.

In his homily, Cardinal Maurice Piat argued that the light should shine in each of the Mauritians. He praised the unity that exists between the different components of our society. "We must live together with respect for each other's culture and religion, in peace and social justice.

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Belgian Deacon accused of serial murder. Will Cardinal have to testify?

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The defence of Ivo Poppe, a former deacon accused of at least 10 murders, wants Cardinal Jozef De Kesel to testify during his trial before the Bruges court of assizes, it said on Thursday at a preliminary hearing. The final list of witnesses will be available on 9 November.

Ivo Poppe, the former deacon of Wevelgem, is accused of at least 10 murders.




Ivo Poppe, 61, is the former deacon of Wevelgem. He has been incarcerated since May 2014 because he was reported to have accelerated the deaths of several terminally ill patients between 1980 and 2011 while working as a nurse and then as a pastoral collaborator in Menin's Sacré-Coeur Hospital now AZ Delta). Four members of his family, including his mother, are also among the victims.

Accused of killing and illegal practice of medicine, the 60-year-old explained that he had delivered the terminally ill from the sufferings but only at their request and in order to help them.

Long list of witnesses
On Thursday, Attorney General Serge Malefason said he wanted to hear 54 witnesses during the trial. The defence prepared a list of 38 witnesses. It includes the name of Jozef De Kesel, the Archbishop of Malines-Bruxelles and Belgian cardinal, who was at the head of the diocese of Bruges at the time of the events.

It is unclear to what extent Jozef De Kesel knew Ivo Poppe. The defense also wants to bring in two doctors to counterbalance the report of the forensic pathologist.

Court President Bart Meganck will present the list of witnesses on 9 November. The composition of the jury will follow on 15 January 2018, before the start of the trial itself on 22 January.

Ivo Poppe, who faces life imprisonment, will be defended by Filip De Reuse and An Govers. Raf Van Goethem and Thierry Vansweevelt will represent the hospital, AZ Delta, the civil party. The interests of the diocese of Bruges will be defended by Jan and Sarah Leysen.

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See also Belgian priest suggests celebration when Catholics die from euthanasia

Vatican gives Belgian religious order last chance in euthanasia dispute

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Indulgence found with Luther's name on it.

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Interview with the museum director who found a letter of indulgence with Luther's name on it.

"A child of his time"
Martin Luther rejected indulgences in his later years. On a letter of indulgence, however, his name can be found. Museum director Vera Lüpkes found it. She explains to domradio.de what it has to do with the letter.

domradio.de : Did Martin Luther jauntily buy indulgences before he took the field against them?

Vera Lüpkes (Director of the Weser Renaissance Museum, Lemgo) : No, he did not buy them jauntily. He bought one. And this one was handed down to us in a copy of 1631. This copy is now available in the National Library in Madrid.

domradio.de : How does the name of Luther come onto the letter of indulgence?

Lüpke : It can be said that Martin Luther was a child of his time, that he was deeply rooted in the pre-Reformation Church. You have to remember the situation at the time. Martin Luther lived as a monk in Erfurt in the Augustinian Emeritus monastery. Erfurt belonged to the ecclesiastical province of Mainz. And in this church province, the indulgence preacher Johann Tetzel was able to preach. At the end of March 1508, Tetzel came to Erfurt and preached the indulgence there, among others in the Augustinian Lutheran monastery where Luther was brother.

domradio.de : So Martin Luther's name was with many other monastery brothers on the letter of indulgence you found?

Lüpke : Quite right. The Pope had decreed that for monasteries indulgences should no longer be written individually, but one for the entire monastery.

domradio.de : How did you find this letter?

Lüpkes : I have been interested in the system of indulgences, and I looked for the Tetzel letter of indulgence for the Augustinian Emeritus monastery and found it in the archives of the National Library in Madrid. On the letter was the name Martin Luder - as Luther called himself initially - together with the other Augustinian hermits.

domradio.de : This letter is now in Madrid and it will not be part of your new exhibition about Martin Luther and the Reformation, right?

Lüpke : No, we could not be loaned the letter. We have it as a copy in the catalogue of our exhibition "Open mouth!" displayed.

domradio.de : What can you tell us about this exhibition?

Lüpke : We are here in the Weser area. We therefore ask how Martin Luther's idea of ​​the Reformation came into the Weser area. On the one hand via the spoken word, on the other via printing and image - that is Bible printing and flyers. And very early on, the Hessian Count took the decision to make the Lutheran Reformation a state religion. That was already 1526. This can be seen in our exhibition with great pictures, interesting flyers and a very good Bible.

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Many Bishops not supporting Pro Pope Francis initiative

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Admitted in another interview with the organiser of the Pro Pope Francis Initiative.   See also Organiser of Pro Pope Francis letter hits out at critics of the Pope and Progressive Catholic "big-guns" attack Correctio Filialis.

Why the Pope now needs support

Over 160 bishops, theologians and other celebrities have now signed an open letter to Pope Francis. Katholisch.de spoke with the co-initiator of the initiative, Paul Zulehner, about lack of support in the Vatican and the (so far) silent majority of the church population.

"Conservative Catholics have recently criticized the Pope with a" childish Correction ". Now bishops, theologians, politicians and other celebrities respond. They defend Francis in an open letter, which is accessible on their website and can be signed by everyone. In the letter, the Pope is asked not to deviate from his previous course and to provide him with support. The co-initiator is the Viennese pastor theologian, Paul Zulehner. In this interview with Katholisch, he talks about the emergence of the initiative, about the correct approach to the critics of the Pope and the many people who are involved.


The Pope

Question: Mr. Zulehner, with all due respect: Does a Pontifex Maximus need the support of an initiative like yours at all?
The University Dean

Zulehner: Asztrik Várszegi, the archbishop of Pannonhalma, who is also a bishop, has told us that, of course, he is very sorry to say that such a thing is necessary. And I can already connect a little to this statement. On the other hand, we also know from the Pope himself that he loves the plurality and the open exchange of opinions and does not suppress them. And to this extent, this conflict, which we want, is quite creative for the life of the Church.

Question: Critics could still speak of a "poor testimony" that now a group has to come and "help" the head of the world church. What do you oppose?

Zulehner: I think that thus the Pope comes less into the firing line. It is also a matter of a fair discussion in the church people themselves, among the bishops, the theologians, the cardinals. And we are participating in this fair debate - with an open visor.

Question: One reads from your public letter that it is an answer to the "Dubia-Brief"and the last published “childish correction” . Behind it are rather smaller groups, but with the "loud scream". Do not these little groups get more attention by your action?

Zulehner: We had the impression that just these small groups were enjoying attention. The bishops are silent, and even in the media, little will be done in favour of the silent majority. And we want to bring this silent majority now. This is extremely successful. The support is overwhelming. We now have over 4,000 supporters and well over 160 signatories of the letter. And these are some very prominent people, such as former Bundestag president, Wolfgang Thierse or the former state president of Hungary, László Sólyom. There are new people around the world, such as Anselm Grün from Germany or David Steindl-Rast from the USA, the "gurus" of the world church.

Question: Why is the majority silent, even the bishops? Why do only a few critics make their voice heard?

Zulehner: It is remarkable that there is so much silence among the bishops. But it must also be noted that a considerable number of the bishops are from the time before Francis. The courageous path of the Pope does not seem to be quite certain for them. And then they just wait and see what happens. I also have responses from bishops and cardinals, who precisely signal this noble restraint, to our initiative. I do not share them, but one can understand their motives.

Question: You said "noble restraint". Are there not perhaps many who think like the critics, but do not dare to say anything?

Zulehner: There certainly is. It has already been seen in the Family Synod that there is an argument in this sensitive point of the admission of remarried divorced to the Sacraments. But this, as the Pope himself says, is a normal development. It takes a vanguard, which starts the development, there are brakemen and there is the big centre, which moves, if one can convince them. And now we want to convince church people.

Question: Were the "Dubia letter " and the "Correctio" legitimate paths of criticism or have the groups gone too far?

Zulehner: I do not want to judge that. I think they have thought of this and have reasons and arguments that may not be the right ones, but they must be heard from their point of view. I am a very peaceful and discreet conversation partner for such groups. And I believe - this is also a concern of the initiative - that the bridge building is needed between the different groups in the church. This could also be aroused by our open action. (Cathcon: calling your opponents childish is hardly going to get them around any table)

Question: The Pope is silent on the criticism of his person. Should he not better answer himself instead of letting other people like you "do it" for him?

Zulehner: I was busy with "Amoris laetitia" and wrote a book entitled "From the Law to the Face". And I agree with the Pope when he says, "Just read the text well." I have also discussed this with Cardinal Schönborn. Like me, he is of the opinion that it is theologically free of knots, which has been made in "Amoris laetitia". And I believe that the Pope is silent because he says, "People can read and understand, if they so wish, and if there are any doubts, this is to be discussed among the theologians but not in the public sphere."

Question: The composition of the signatories is varied. How was this group formed? Are you targeting people, including bishops and cardinals?

Zulehner: It was Tomas Halik, who had the idea of the initiative and persuaded me, to go along with him on this path. And he has a huge network in the Anglo-Saxon area, where he has won prominent people and will still win them. I will do this more intensively in Europe, but also in Asia such as Taiwan. We have really good contacts all over the world and look to hand-pick signers individually, while the supporters can register themselves directly on the homepage.

Question: Hand-picked means you have created lists of potential signatures in advance?

Zulehner: Yes, and we have written to the desired persons. Then it is like a snowball system, as we ask the people to promote our initiative in their own circle of contacts.

Question: From whom do you want to gain support?

Zulehner: For example, we are also trying to win support among the religious, and we have already General Superiors and Provincial Superiors. We want to have not only cardinals and bishops. They are welcome, but basically, it is an action of the thoughtful and committed people of God - this applies to the signatories as well as the supporters. It is intended to cover the entire range of the church, whereby we would like to make explicit the prominent figures of theology and politics and therefore list them. We would also like to get signatories from among the German bishops.

Question: And how did a man like Wolfgang Thierse get there?

Zulehner: This was presumably via the ZdK (organisation of the German Laity)and Professor Thomas Sternberg. We maintain intensive relations not least with the lay organizations and initiatives. Also ,the President of the Catholic Action Austria, Gerda Schaffelhofer, is among the signatories. We are targeting these people. It is, however, astonishing that we have also found an incredible acceptance among the absolutely serious top theologians- whether from America, Eastern Europe, Germany or Austria. "Finally," people say, "good luck!"

Question: What is your goal? How many supporters should there be?

Zulehner: I do not know what's going to happen. I am amazed at the moment, how fast this is now. That in a few days so much fire has be generated. That means: The ground was already very dry and ready to burn. How many of them will be at the end is probably not very important in detail. In any case, we will get incredibly many supporters. If it goes on like this, I count on over 10,000 people. And that cannot be overlooked in media terms. "Vatican Radio" has already reported it. Those in Rome have long since come to terms with what we are doing.

Question: What do you do with all the signatories at the end of the initiative?

Zulehner: In the end, we want to send this letter to the Pope, in which all the signatories and supporters are listed. And I think that his not always easy exercise of office will be supported . The Vatican journalist. Marco Politi says the Pope has too little support in the Vatican. So now he gets it from the outside, from us.

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Pope Benedict's favourite abbey and college distance themselves from the Correctio

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Cathcon note: the Cistercian Abbey of Heiligenkreuz has a very closely associated college, named after the Pope, in its grounds.
The College was opened during Pope Benedict's visit in 2007.



Heiligenkreuz distances itself from "Correctio"
Among the signatories of Pope Francis's public "Correction" is also a guest professor at the College of Heiligenkreuz. They have now distanced themselves from the philosopher.

The Heiligenkreuz College dissociates itself from one of its guest professors, who had signed a public "Correction" of the pope . He had signed in his own name. Nevertheless, this throws a shadow on the college, says the statement, which was published on the college's website. The sponsor of the Philosophical-Theological College Benedict XVI is the Cistercian Abbey of Heiligenkreuz.

Since its founding in 1802, it belonged to the core values of the Heiligenkreuz College, "to teach and act" inviolably "cum Petro et sub Petro". "We therefore make it clear that Heiligenkreuz College is closely connected to Roman Magisterium in all things, and we regard it as our greatest honour and our first duty to keep the faithful to Peter's successor, that is to say, our Holy Father Pope Francis", it says in the position statement. It is signed by the Abbot of Heiligenkreuz, Maximilian Heim, as well as the university rector, Father Karl Wallner.

Guest professor accuses Pope of "heresy"

The guest professor of philosophy, Thomas Stark, who is not mentioned by name in the statement of the university, together with other critics accuses Pope Francis in spreading heresies. This "Filial correction for the propagation of heresies" had been published on the Internet at the end of September. The authors argue that Francis had indirectly or directly represented a false doctrine of marriage, morals and the Eucharist, and urged him to publicly reject them. In addition to Stark, further laymen, clergy and theologians, among them the German author,Martin Mosebach, the Italian, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi , former President of the Vatican Bank and Bishop Bernard Fellay of the Society of St Pius X, who has seceded from Rome.

According to the Latin title, the "Correctio filialis de haeresibus propagatis" refers to the papal "Amoris Laetitia". Already in November 2016, four cardinals had sent a letter with five so-called "Dubia" (doubts) to Pope Francis and asked him for clarification.

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Inter-religious education replaces Catholic education in Austria

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The Kirchliche Pädagogische Hochschule (KPH) Vienna / Krems is an "open space for the coexistence of religions" is, according to the words of Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, . Austria's largest private educational college, in which seven Christian churches work together and which also cooperates with the free "churches" as well as the Muslim, Alevi and Israelite religious communities, being "no bastion one against the other." "The churches are concerned about the future of our country and education," the Viennese Archbishop said at a ceremony on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the KPH on Wednesday afternoon at the University of Vienna-Strebersdorf.

My faith, your faith, no faith.  Our Country.

As the most important task of education, and thus also the goal of ecclesiastical teacher training, Schönborn described as the "promotion of responsible freedom" (Cathcon: the universal law of the Church is the salvation of the soul). The "passionate educator", Pope Francis has written about this in a programme form: "The prudence, the good judgment, and the reasonableness depend on a whole chain of elements that form a synthesis within the person, more precisely; in the centre of their freedom. " Education should promote "responsible liberties that choose with meaning and reason at decisive moments" and let people understand that "their life and that of their fellowship is in their hands, and that this freedom is an immeasurable gift," the Cardinal quoted the Papal Letter "Amoris laetitia" (Para. 262).

Schönborn also recalled the pre-history of the KPH Wien / Krems: As a result of a challenging Academies Study Act in 1999, the Catholic Bishops' Conference had taken a "courageous decision" with financial commitments for the church to remain in teacher training. Education is ultimately a "primordial element of the Jewish-Christian tradition" and "an essential part of what we understand by religion". Since 2007 the "ecumenically launched" KPH Wien / Krems has taken "an important place in teacher training" thanks to "excellent cooperation between the churches and the state".

"Role model for society and school"

The chairman of the university council, Andrea Pinz, described the KPH as the "response of the churches to one of the great challenges of our time", . The training centre was a "role model for society and school" by providing a meeting place for "learning in diversity". Graduates were "ready for the reality, which is as plural as the university itself" in the face of today's multi-ethnic composition of school classes. In this situation, "a sensitive treatment of religion as well as with ethical and social diversity" and also the knowledge of one's own background was important, emphasized Pinz.

Today the KPH Wien / Krems stands as a "strong, large facility" with an influence far beyond the confines of the religions and the country, according to the chairman of the university council. It was a "workshop for the future that draws from the past". Pinz announced that the churches would continue to work independently in the training of teachers.

Five hundred high-ranking guests from the worlds of religion, science and society took part in the ceremonial act at the Vienna-Strebersdorf university, including Cardinal Schönborn, St. Pölten, Bishop Klaus Küng and Bishop Conferences General Secretary, Peter Schipka, as well as the Lutheran Bishop, Michael Bünker, Paisios Jung, the president of the Muslim community, Ibrahim Olgun, Arie Folger, the Jewish Chief Rabbi and the Alevitian head of the school, Ertürk Maral.

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A video saves thousands of words as Marxists flee before Our Lord and Saviour

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1 Thesallonians 5
[5] For all you are the children of light, and children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. 
omnes enim vos filii lucis estis, et filii diei : non sumus noctis, neque tenebrarum.


Marxists are children of darkness, par excellence 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Bishop of Mainz calls for rethinking of gender roles.

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The Mainz Bishop Peter Kohlgraf has presented a differentiated opinion on gender and gender equality in the Catholic Church. He considers it justified to "rethink gender roles in the face of gender issues today", the Catholic Magisterium can not escape the topic. Kohlgraf writes in a contribution to the Mainz newspaper "Allgemeine Zeitung" (Thursday). God had not "become man rather as a humanbeing ". Kohlgraf is concerned about the fact that the church is being discussed about admission to "power-holding offices". This shows that "something has gone wrong overall".

He emphasizes that not only women but also most men are excluded from questions of power "because too many themes have been linked by power over the centuries with ordination." Kohlgraf, however, sees himself as a bishop "of course, bound to the statements of the papal Magisterium". In 1994, Pope John Paul II had decided the question of a consecration of women and "Pope Francis reaffirmed the statement". The bishop therefore assumes a duty of loyalty for himself.

Nevertheless, according to Kohlgraf's words, the ecclesiastical Magisterium cannot "put their head in the sand and pretend that any opposition is only nonsense." The opponents can also not do this. Until the nineteenth century, the question of women's ordination had not been a relevant issue for society as well, according to the bishop. This does not mean, however, that today's church arguments are a product of the 19th century. The question was whether the church could change a tradition that had been "completed" in the second century.

(Cathcon: No!)


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Diocese has more new bishops than new priests this year

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Diocese has more new bishops than new priests
A number of dioceses have been struggling with a shortage of new recruits . However, in this archbishopric, the situation is particularly extraordinary: in the past, even more bishops were consecrated as priests were ordained.



In the Czech Archdiocese of Olomouc, only a new diocesan priest was ordained this year - but two new bishops were consecrayed. Archbishop Jan Graubner took this situation as an occasion to call for prayer, as Vatican Radio reports.

Graubner expressed his request, according to the report on the occasion of the double bishops' consecration in the Olomouc St Wenceslas Cathedral last Saturday. Antonin Basler and Josef Nuzik, two new auxiliary bishops were consecrated to the Archdiocese. Graubner emphasized at the festive service that prayers were not sufficient for vocations; one must also have "enough children for God to call someone". The Archbishop also thanked all those who worked for the protection of Christian marriage and life, such as by voting in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

According to the Pontifical Yearbook, the Archdiocese of Olomouc last counted a three-million-million-strong Catholic population of 343 priests. Last year, five new diocesan priests were ordained.



Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Pope Francis launches "A New Enlightenment"

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Club of Rome sees Pope Francis pioneer of new thinking

"Virtue of balance"
The Club of Rome confirms that Francis plays an important role in solving humanity's problems. Instead of doctrines, the Pope had launched a "virtue of balance", according to the international group.

With the encyclopaedia "Laudato si" (2015) a "new enlightenment" had begun, which the world needs to escape elf-destruction, the new report of the international association of personalities from science, culture, economy and politics, the Club of Rome, which was presented on Monday evening in Munich.

To this extent, the Pope was a "historic landmark". The report bears the German title "Wir sind dran", one of the two main authors is Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker.

The role of the economy

Weizsäcker said in Munich that civilization was in a "deep philosophical crisis". The knowledge about the necessary changes for the preservation of the world was available, but all the therapies so far proposed by the policy made the situation worse.

The second chief author of the report, Swedish Anders Wijkman, said the role of the economy must be redefined. The question was whether the task would be to make one percent of humanity even richer, or to satisfy the needs of all human beings.

Critical confrontation with creation

"A great deal can be achieved by looking at religiously-based teachings that require care and care of our shared house," the report says in reference to "Laudato si". Critically, the authors deal with the Jewish-Christian Islamic tradition of the so-called Creation Order. The mandate to mankind to multiply itself and subdue the earth could no longer be valid for a "full world" with now 7.5 billion inhabitants.

"Instead of doctrines," the "new Enlightenment" must emphasize the "virtue of balance", wrote Weizsäcker, Wijkman and their 32 co-authors. The relationship between man and nature, public and private goods as well as short-term and long-term interests and consequences must be balanced. In the key part of the book are 18 success models for business and politics, which invite immediate action.

Private capital should flow into climate friendly companies

After the book presentation, entrepreneurs in Munich called for an "investment change". Private capital should be targeted at those companies that felt committed to the Paris Climate Treaty and the sustainable development goals of the United Nations, thus contributing to solving the real problems of the world.

Since 1968, the Club of Rome has been unifying personalities from science, culture, business and politics. His first report on the "limits of growth" in 1972 inspired the global environmental movement.

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Organiser of Pro Pope Francis letter hits out at critics of the Pope

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Co-initiator Zulehner for public support for the Pope

"Do not sit in the armchair"

"Pro Pope Francis". This is the name of a group in which Catholics have joined forces to publicly support Pope Francis. A co-initiator is the Viennese pastoral theologian Paul M. Zulehner, who explains this step at domradio.de.
In the shadow of Cardinal König

domradio.de: You have written an open letter to Pope Francis, signed by several bishops, theologians and well-known Catholics from public life. How did this letter to Pope Francis arise?

Prof. Paul M. Zulehner (pastoral theologian from Vienna and co-founder of the initiative "Pro Pope Francis"): There was considerable criticism of the pope by the letter from cardinals to him and finally the allegation that he was moreover a heretic (Ed: deviating from official church doctrine (Cathcon: what a world in which the word heretic actually has to be explained- part of the great problem). This is theologically as well as practically unacceptable. (Cathcon: although his Protestant ecumenical partners think many Popes up until the Reformation were heretical; he won’t be raising the issue with them any time soon. Has he not read St Thomas Aquinas among many others ?) I think you have to make a counter-position visible and put the situation back into balance by showing that a very large number of faithful and committed, outstanding personalities of the church and public life really welcome and very much support this pope.

domradio.de: Is this also indirectly a response to the writing of the so-called "Letter of the 62 "? Recently there was a letter from critics who accused the Pope of heresy.

Zulehner: We believe that the discussion with this letter can happen on a different level, in theological parlours. One can certainly discuss one or the other. But both the Viennese Cardinal Schönborn and Pope Francis, in the publication of the papal "Amoris laetitia", have said that it is practically theologically and systematically watertight and airtight, and that from a dogmatic point of view it is nothing new at all. (Cathcon: saying that it is, does not make it true. This is how Luther justified one of his erroneous translations of the Bible)

The Pope wishes that mercy, which is also identical with the righteousness of God in the Jewish Torah, is the supreme measure for the practice of the Church. (Cathcon: the salvation of souls is this measure) Then it cannot be that people can ultimately no longer participate in a hopeless situation in ecclesiastical life, because this is not God's way, so to deal with people who have been made guilty for tragic reasons and want to return to the Gospel..

It is inadmissible to say - as a Cardinal Pell once formulated in a preface to a book - that God may forgive them, but the Church cannot forgive them. This is, from a theological point of view, the self-abolition of the Church, if it does not make experienceable what God does in man.

domradio.de: The Catholic Church has its principles. Take the example of the remarried divorced. The Pope's critics say that the doorway to interpretations is opened and the Catholic sacrament of the uniqueness of marriage is fundamentally questioned. This cannot be made so easy, say the critics.

Zulehner: This is, however, a very fundamentalist understanding of the so-called indissolubility of marriage, since the early church has in fact already said that there are certain situations where someone can leave the marriage bond. And there is above all, the is the practice of the Eastern Church since third fourth centuries, which is truly Christian and has not been accused or will be accused of heresy.

The Council of Trent has expressly expressed the opinion that the practice of Eastern Churches is not condemned. So, we can say with a clear conscience that there are apparently different forms of the original power of the gospel. The Catholic Church has now gone to the school of the Eastern Church and is learning to better understand the Gospel. (Cathcon: It would be useful here to go to the Council of Trent as a whole, and the Degree on Justification as a whole )

domradio.de: In the letter, you support and praise the pastoral culture of the incumbent Pope. For what pastoral culture does the Pope stand?

Zulehner: All the great secular organizational developers say that the relationship between an organization and people is determined via culture, that is, the dealings, the content, the acceptance, via what people gain from the organization. This seems at least as important to me as the structural change, for example, the centralization of the church, for the spread of Magisterium into the entire world church.

If one- formulated in a quite stricking way, at the way that accents shifts, then it goes from sin to wound, from the law to the face, from the moralization to the healing and from the ideologist to the shepherd. These are clear accents which present the past practice of the Church at the same time as not like that of Jesus.

What Francis is doing is to dig deeper and deeper into this original power of Jesus' dealings with men. Especially with those on the margins of society. This, I believe, is the jumping point.
The Pope is not superficial, but, if one reads through his texts, one realizes that it is the image of God from which he talks that you must, becoming like the father of mercy and the Lord, make this the pastoral of mercy as a church, otherwise you would betray our God.

domradio.de: It is a public letter that you wrote to Pope Francis. Does the Pope have so many opponents that he needs this support?

Zulehner: Mario Politi (journalist and Vatican expert, editor's note) says that Francis had too little support. He does not only have too little support in the Vatican but he has too little support in the entire Church throughout the world. The Eastern European bishops are silent. The Western European bishops are also silent.

I am very curious about how we can win German bishops. We are in conversation with the Secretariat of the German Bishops' Conference. There will be a clarification on Wednesday as to whether and how German bishops can join. I would also like to win Cardinal Woelki. This is what I would like to publicly. For he is, for me, one of the admirable Cardinals who, in the footsteps of the Pope, is completely clear and unaffected. (Cathcon: ignoring here, for whatever reason, the Cardinal’s lack of commitment to ecumenism)

I think we are also doing a bit of awareness raising in the church that now you cannot sit in the armchair under this Pope, but that there is a historical moment in the Church, an open window, which is to be used world-wide.

Progressive Catholic "big-guns" attack Correctio Filialis

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Conservative Catholics had criticized the Pope with a "Correction". Now, many bishops, theologians and other prominent Catholics are reacting - and defending Francis in an open letter. Even a former German Bundestag president has signed.

Francis is to be defended with a new international initiative against attacks by Catholic critics. The group "Pro-Pope Francis", in which Catholics from the church and public life are represented, addresses directly the Pope in an online-accessible letter. "With this public letter, we are expressing our gratitude for your courageous and theologically well-founded leadership", says the website "www.pro-pope-francis.com".

The "pastoral culture" of Francis stands for a manner of dealing with the people in which not the law but the compassion should have the last word, their website says. And, "They dream of a 'church as mother and shepherdess'. In addition to the initiators, the theologians Paul Zulehner (Vienna)
Here with Cardinal König

and Father Tomas Halik (Prague),



 more than 100 signatories of the open letter are currently available (as of Tuesday). These include, for example, the Austrian retired bishops Paul Iby, (Eisenstadt)



 and Helmut Krätzl (Vienna), 



the Abbot of Pannonhalma (Hungary), Asztrik Varszegi, 


the Prague auxiliary bishop Vaclav Maly 



and the former bishop of North Aliwal (South Africa). Among other things, the Berlin sociologist, Andreas Lob-Hüdepohl, the Jesuit and chief editor of the "Voices of the Times", Andreas Batlogg, 

Father Batlogg SJ (a thoroughly modern Jesuit)

as well as the former President of the Bundestag, Wolfgang Thierse, 

A modern Socialist, Wolfgang Thierse

have signed up from Germany. In addition, there are around 1,000 "supporters" who have participated online in the campaign.

Answer to the Pope's "childish correction"
In the letter, ask the Pope not to deviate from his way, and assure him of his support. Francis has been able to reform the pastoral culture of the Catholic Church in a short time. He has taken to his heart the "wounded" peopl, but also the wounded nature. "They see the church at the edges of life as a field hospital," it says.

The background of the initiative is a "childlike censure" of conservative clerics and theologians, who demanded the pope distance himself from "heresies". The signatories take the view that Francis "directly or indirectly" encouraged heretical positions on marriage, morals, and the doctrine of the sacraments. Among them are the German writer Martin Mosebach, the former head of the Vatican bank IOR, Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the former chairman of the national research council in Italy, CNR, Roberto de Mattei, and the philosopher and priest, Antonio Livi, former dean at Lateran University , Among the signatories is Bernard Fellay, General Superior of the traditionalist Society of St Pius X.

The open letter
Highly esteemed Pope Francis!
Your Pastoral Initiatives and their theological justification are currently being strongly attacked by a group in the Church. With this public letter, we express our gratitude for their courageous and theologically well-founded leadership.

In a short time, you have succeeded in reforming the pastoral culture of the Catholic Church from its original origins. You have taken to your heart the wounded people, the wounded nature. You see the church at the edges of life, as a field hospital. Your concern is every single person loved by God. The last word in dealing with men should not be a legalistic but a mercifully interpreted law. God and His mercy characterize the pastoral culture that you wish for the Church. You dream of a "church as mother and shepherdess". We share this dream with you.

We ask you not to deviate from this path, and assure you of our full support and our constant prayer.

The signatories





Top 100 Catholic Blogs and Websites for Catholics

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In at Number 85
 

 


 
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Catholic support for a Muslim holiday in Germany

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After harsh criticism from the Union (the conservative side of German politics), Federal Minister of the Interior, Thomas de Maizière (CDU), receives support from the Catholic Church for his suggestion of a Muslim holiday in Germany: "In a multi--religious society, an Islamic holiday can be added in regions with a high proportion of religious Muslims, without the Christian tradition of our land being betrayed- this happens much more in the transformation of St. Nicholas to Santa Claus, said the President of the Central Committee of German Catholics (ZdK), Thomas Sternberg, the "Passauer Neue Presse" (Tuesdays edition).

The calendar of feasts is "neither a museum nor a mere sequence of labour-free days, but signs of the wealth of European traditions," Sternberg justified his position and demanded: "Where there is a significant proportion of Muslims, one should also take note of their festive culture." The Central Committee of the German Catholics is a union of representatives of the diocesan councils, the Catholic associations and institutions of the lay associations. In kindergartens and school, the renouncement of St. Martin, Christkindl or Cross is not the appropriate reaction, but also the "Sugar Festival" (the end of Ramadan) for the Christian or other educated children Sternberg said. Christian holidays are a public holiday "an expression of the bond between our society and the Christian tradition". However, this would be less endangered by the introduction of a Muslim holiday, but by the fact that fewer and fewer people could start out with these days. "A great concern is the ever less familiarity with the content of these festivals, whether it is Christ's Ascension or Whitsun," the ZdK President said.

New citizens and refugees could find out little about Christian festivals. "This is why it is equally important to inform the churches, educational institutions and the media about the content of the Christian festivals," said the call of the church functionary. The argument that in many Muslim countries it is impossible for Christians to exercise their religion freely, Sternberg does not allow as an objection to the introduction of Muslim holidays in Germany. "The complaint about this cannot affect the religious friendliness of our state system," he said. De Maizière had recently shown himself open at an election campaign to the introduction of Muslim holidays in certain regions of Germany. He had been sharply criticized for this from the ranks of the CDU and CSU.


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Monday, October 16, 2017

Media director who made refugee boat into altar fired for foolish tweet

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Media director Mayer leaves archbishopric Cologne
He succeeded in obtaining one or another PR coup for the archbishopric of Cologne. But then Mediendirektor Ansgar Mayer got a tweet in the headlines. At the end of the year he will give up his office.

The Media Director of the Archdiocese of Cologne, Ansgar Mayer, will left the diocese at the end of the year at his own request. According to the archbishopric on Monday, the reason was a new task in Hamburg, which he wanted to concentrate on. Mayer had only taken over in January 2016 the former staff office and converted it to the main department of media and communication. He headed three departments with around 40 employees and developed, among other things, a holistic media strategy for all platforms and channels.
The Archbishopric regretted Mayer's decision. He had succeeded in establishing a corporate communication which meets the needs of the time, said Vicar General. Dominik Meiering. In addition, the 45-year-old had a "PR coup" for the archbishopric. Thus, media attention was attracted from beyond the German borders, when Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki used a refugee boat in front of the Cologne Cathedral as an altar.
Corpus Christi in Cologne
Negative headlines

At last, however, Mayer had drawn attention to himself with his personal negative headline. In a tweet about the many electors' votes for the Alternative for Germany in Saxony (a depressed state in former Eastern Germany), he had written after the Bundestag election: "Czech Republic, how about: We take your nuclear waste, you take Saxony?" On top of that, there were some critical reactions, which were spread over Twitter and Facebook as well as on numerous Internet portals. Later, Mayer asked for forgiveness. Whether or not his present departure from the Archbishopric of Cologne is also connected with these occurrences was not divulged by the Archbishopric.

Mayer was born in 1972 in Ellwangen. He studied political science, history, journalism and Catholic theology. Among other things he was head of the Crossmedia training at the Axel-Springer-Akademie from 2007 to 2012 and from December 2012 until his change to Cologne on the board of the "Computerbild" in Hamburg.

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Cardinal asks forgiveness for the way the Church has treated the divorced, separated and remarried

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Cardinal Philippe Barbarin presented on Sunday, October 15 to a full cathedral the "paths of discernment" proposed by Pope Francis in Amoris Laetitia.

After Rouen and Le Havre, Lyon is the third diocese to organize such a meeting, to "concretely implement" the Apostolic Exhortation on the Family.


Catherine waits on the forecourt. A book under her arm, she watched Cardinal Philippe Barbarin. For an hour the Archbishop of Lyon lingered with those "people who had experienced a marital breakdown", whom he invited on Sunday evening 15 October, to exchange thoughts with him in the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist. The night has fallen, Catherine can finally hand the work to him. A copy of The Joy of Love, the apostolic exhortation on the family that this childcare assistant asks the cardinal to dedicate. Before starting the conversation.

At her side, her new companion, Laurent. This maintenance technician had to "leave" his parish, at the same time that he separated from his wife. Like Élodie, "unmarried mother", who joined the exchange. "We had to be accepted elsewhere," she regrets. "We feel that the Church is no longer fixed on these issues," underlined Laurent, 52 years old. Catherine and I went to see the priest freshly arrived in our parish. He welcomed us. "

Ensure to "never use the language of the permitted and the forbidden"

Symbolically seated among the crowd at the beginning of the encounter, and then encountered in the shadow of a pillar, the cardinal applauded at the end of the six testimonies of "separated, divorced or divorced remarried Catholics ", delivered before a full cathedral. This, a year and a half after the publication of Amoris laetitia. And ten days after meeting Pope Francis, with 80 priests of the diocese. "When I asked the priests: What theme would you like him to talk to?", The answers were unanimous: "On Amoris laetitia chapter 8" to "accompany, discern and integrate fragility" ", says the cardinal.

For it is "a difficult road" opened by the Pope, commented the Archbishop of Lyon. Starting from the points on which Francis insisted on to the Lyon delegation. First of all, to consider "people first" and not marital situations. Next, make sure to "never use the language of the permitted and forbidden".
A "difficult road", therefore, that some priests of the diocese borrowed. Like Father Franck Gacogne, parish priest of Saint-Benoît, in Bron, standing beside Florence and Georges. It is they who speak, with a voice. Twelve years ago, they sought to "reconnect with the Church", especially during the baptism of their three children. But they had long received only "inadequate answers," they say modestly.

The cardinal wanted to "ask for forgiveness"

Other witnesses do not hide the sufferings. Some say they have found themselves found in a "club of outcasts". "Neither judged nor dismissed from the Christian life," another person confides nevertheless "to be confronted with contradictory, indifferent or embarrassed positions of certain pastors". And the cardinal insisted on "asking for forgiveness," before handing each of the witnesses a copy of the apostolic exhortation.

Finally, Florence and George were heard, in the person of the parish priest of Bron. "Are you at peace?" This was his first question, "reports the couple who are both divorced and now remarried, who then chose to get involved in the local community, by holding welcoming consultations. The beginning of a long journey. They were now going to Mass as a family. But they felt "lonely on their bench" at the time of communion. "The more we find our place, the less we feel we have the right to have it," they summarize.

Thanks to the paths opened by Amoris laetitia, the priest offered them a support, based on a course built by the Reliance Teams linked to the Teams of Our Lady. Then they prepared "a celebration with a blessing of our couple". At the next Sunday mass, they returned to the Eucharist. And they became even more involved in the parish, especially with other divorced-remarried couples, who were in turn engaged in a path of discernment. Before, "possibly", like them, an access to the sacraments.

Reception groups are still rare

This prudence is in line with that of Cardinal Barbarin, who developed the question at length, recalling that "access to communion has always been a delicate problem in the Church" for all Christians. As for the divorced-remarried, of course, he says, "when a person cannot bear not being able to communicate and finally decides, because of this internal hurt, not to come to Mass, it would be absurd and inhuman to continue to wield a banning sign in front of them. " "For some people, the Cardinal repeated several times, this path of faith will go through the fact of going communion, for others to participate in the mass without communion, like Charles Peguy. "

The important thing in the eyes of the Cardinal is above all to enable those "in a situation of rupture" to "find their place in the Church". And, from this point of view, there is still some way to go.
The Florence and Georges route is a rare example of support driven by a parish dynamic. "Some of my colleagues are aware of the issue, but perhaps they prefer personal support," says Father Franck Gacogne, “While the ecclesial dimension seems important to me”. In fact, few parishes in the diocese of Lyon have for the time being set up a reception group for people whose marriage has broken down.

The latter are currently invited by Bénédicte and Édouard Michoud, episcopal delegates for the pastoral care of families, to "continue with their local community, their parish". Without a "single path", they insist, the important thing being "to overcome possible fears". On the part of the people whose marriage has broken down, as on the part of the local communities.

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Radio Vatican deeply concerned about the result of the Austrian election

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Austria has decided that the People's Party under Sebastian Kurz has emerged as a clear victor of the elections this Sunday. In short, the government has now a mandate. This scenario also seems to suggest a coalition of the People's Party with the liberal-populist FPÖ. It was a difficult choice for Christians in the country, whose election campaign was also marked by mutual hits beneath the belt and populism.

Sebastian Kurz, however, could now become a source of hope for the Alpine region: this is maintained by the electoral observer and Catholic publicistm Heinz Nußbaumer. The political pressure from the right was undeniable, but now had to be conducted in quieter waters, says Nußbaumer in conversation with Vatican Radio. "Both parties - the ÖVP and the FPÖ - who have called for a stricter, the FPÖ even for a very strict migration policy, have won very strongly. The issues of security, migration, fear of Islamism were certainly the dominant motives. The second phenomenon is the deep-seated wish of the Austrians to change the basic constants of politics. "

According to Nußbaumer, this constellation of electoral themes, which was "massively overplayed" in the election campaign, had made the vote so complicated for Christians: "The decisive factor for me as a Christian on election day was the fact that precisely those two parties, have presented themselves as the hardest in terms of migration, dealing with refugees, and closing refugee routes. "

The Christian faith had been a "sign of our culture and identity" but Christian content was missing. In this context, Nußbaumer points to the theologian Paul Michael Zulehner, who had already identified the precarious situation for Christians before the election: "Not a few Christians will be politically homeless this time because political action on the refugee question, these populist simplifications and the lack of a Christian inspired and attractive vision of an Austria of the future disrupts many committed believers and has brought them into a difficult emotional isolation. "

The scaremongering of the threatened Islamization might thus have possibly decided the Austrian election, the more important is now a rethink, says the long-term head of the Austrian Presidential chancery. "We must now look to see if these two parties [ÖVP and FPÖ, Note], should they jointly form a coalition, then descend from this exposed position given governmental responsibility."

In any case, he expects a Chancellor such as Kurz to say that the "exclusion emotions" observed in the election campaign will now be replaced by "a more moderate and responsible attitude, but also a humanitarian and Christian understanding", Nußbaumer is confident.

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See also Bishops take on the political right

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Muslim public holiday in Germany being considered by German Interior Minister

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When Thomas de Maizière chatted in Wolfenbüttel on Monday evening, he did not know that he was stirring  a heated debate. It belongs to the essence of the 63-year-old, sometimes to let his thoughts to hang, sometimes a little chat, without larger plan behind it. But because he is the Federal Minister of the Interior, even the smallest talk can become a big number.

At the invitation of the election campaigning CDU party colleagues De Maizière drove to Lower Saxony. On Sunday is Regional Elections and it could be quite close. In the venue called Komm, it was about refugee policy, about integration and the so-called "defining culture". As Minister of the Interior, he feels "responsible for the social context", he said, according to a report from the portal regionalwolfsburg.de, and said: "Now is the question, what is it, in the traditional sense of the word, the rubber band binding society, and what to do so that it does not tear? "

Thomas de Maizière now experiences how difficult this rubber band when it is already under tension. In the course of the evening, he also commented on German holidays and said, ""I'm ready to talk about whether we could introduce a Muslim holiday. Maybe one might like to do this. There are also regions where there is All Saints' Day, elsewhere not. Where there are many Catholics, there is the Feast of All Saints, where there are few, there is no All Saints. Where there are many Muslims; why cannot you think about a Muslim holiday?

De Maizière then became louder and emphasized: "But our holidays are a Christian one, and that should remain so. Whitsun, Easter, Christmas."

What remained of it in a country in which even the Greens are currently discussing the term "Heimat"? That the Interior Minister thinks about introducing Muslim holidays in Germany. (His general additional comment is less important.)  This leads to considerable excitement, especially in his party CDU and his Bavarian sister CSU.  They really wanted to close "the right flank", following the modest results at the German Parliamentary election three weeks ago. And this obviously excludes the inclusion of Muslim fasting or the Feast of Sacrifice (Eid) as a holiday in the German calendar.

"Our Christian heritage is not negotiable," said CSU regional group leader, Alexander Dobrindt of the Bild . "To introduce Islamic holidays in Germany is out of the question for us." Party colleagues, Joachim Herrmann, Manfred Weber and Stephan Mayer expressed similar opinions. The CSU hace not been so united for a long time. So as not to leave the AfD any more space, the party shortened De Maizier's statement to the maximum and poured ridicule on it. "De Maiziere for Muslim holiday!" states an AfD poster on the Internet and to this: "We propose February 30th !

De Maiziere also received criticism from his CDU . Lower Saxony's election campaigner Bernd Althusmann was not very pleased with the statement, he was likely to fear losing electoral votes of his conservative clientele. "Holidays have a long tradition in Germany, and I see no need to change these structures," said Regional Head. Interior expert, Wolfang Bosbach explained that Germany had a Christian-Jewish religious character, and not an Islamic one. The SPD chairman Martin Schulz has already stated: "I have noted above all the ways in which Mr De Maizière is immediately kicked by his own ranks."

De Maizière: Holidays marked by Christianity

Thomas de Maizière is obviously uncomfortable with the hustle and bustle of the game. It was not, after all, a fundamental consideration or political initiative, but rather was expressed in the small Wolfenbütteler Saal. On Saturday, the German Ministry of the Interior told the Süddeutsche Zeitung : "Minister De Maizière has made it clear that our holidays are shaped by Christianity and that this should remain so." Although he was ready to talk about individual Muslim holidays in certain regions, he said, "but in principle, he maintains that our holiday culture has precisely Christian and no other roots."

It also points out that the German constitution guarantees freedom of religious exercise. This also means that people can celebrate their religious festivals. The city states of Hamburg and Bremen have therefore concluded agreements with Muslim associations, according to which Muslim pupils can be exempted from high school on Islamic holidays and can take leave of their employees. In fact, other states would also proceed in this way.

But the impression remains that the Union is currently not prepared for a differentiated discussion about Muslim holidays in Germany. Especially not the CSU. The shock of the rise of the right-wing populists from the AfD has hit deeply, they would prefer for such topics not to be raised. Especially when they come from their own ranks.

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