Words and epithets will soon be lacking to describe the revolt which not only rumbles in Germany, but passes to provocative acts, by defying the Catholic discipline recently recalled by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).
For the record, on March 15, the CDF published a “responsum” asserting that the Church cannot bless same-sex unions. The brief response was accompanied by an explanatory note and a commentary giving all the theological and canonical justifications.
The reactions that followed provided evidence of the need for this act of clarification by the CDF. Some bishops, such as Msgr. Johan Bonny, Bishop of Antwerp, were particularly virulent.
The reaction of the “base” was not long in coming either. More than 200 German academics protested, accusing the text of “lacking theological depth, hermeneutical understanding, and argumentative rigor.” At the same time, more than 2,000 “pastors” - priests, deacons, pastoral assistants - manifested a declared refusal to comply.
This revolt rises to a new level in the rebellion. A group of German priests have decided to establish a day of blessing for all LGBT + couples, set for May 10, the Monday before the feast of the Ascension.
A website has been dedicated to what must be called a defiant desecration against Roman authority, titled “liebegewinnt,” which can be translated as “victory of love.” It allows officials to specify the locations where these unnamed ceremonies will be held.
A dozen German cities are already involved in the areas of Bavaria, Baden Württemberg, Rhineland Palatinate, North Rhine Westphalia, Lower Saxony, and Hamburg. The splendor will be there with large banners intended to decorate the facades ...
The organizers explain that, faced with the CDF’s refusal, they will continue “to support people who engage in a binding partnership and to bless their relationship.” They add that they respect and appreciate their love, and that they believe “that the blessing of God is with them.”
They conclude by stating: “We do not accept that an exclusionary and outdated sexual morality can be realized to the detriment of people and undermines our pastoral work.”
Msgr. Franz-Josef Overbeck, Bishop of Essen, in the Rhineland of North Westphalia, meanwhile said he would do nothing against priests who offer to bless same-sex unions. Suffice it to say that he is not the only one, and that the bishops who oppose him can be counted on the fingers of one hand.