“I share concerns about the numerous concrete steps that large parts of this local church are now taking that threaten to move further away from the common path of the universal Church.” Those are the exact words of Pope Francis in a recent letter responding to four German Catholics regarding the developments of their local Church.
The Pope's letter, published in the German newspaper “Die Welt,” shows proof that he is still worried about the direction of the Church in Germany.
The concerns are centered around the German Church's resumed plans to construct a permanent “Synodal Council” to create new ways of governance, despite the Vatican's explicit denial of their power to establish this. Pope Francis has spoken about this kind of approach in the past.
Sometimes I feel great sadness when I see a community that with good will, but mistakenly, thinks to make the Church based on gatherings, as if it were a political party. The majority, the minority…
Before closing the letter, the Pope references his words in his July 2019 “Letter to the Pilgrim People of God in Germany,” where he renewed his call to stop self-absorbed dialogues and instead focus on prayer, penance and adoration.