On Saturday, Mar. 11, German Synodal Way at Frankfurt flushed several bishops on blessing the same-sex union. These bishops include Bishop Franz-Josef Bode of Osnabrück and Bishop Heiner Wilmer of Hildesheim.

Bishops in German Who Plans to Allow Same-sex Unions in their Churches

On Tuesday, Mar. 14, Bishop Franz-Josef Bode of Osnabrück stated that the Synodal Way, which ended in Frankfurt on Mar. 11, gave them the momentum they needed for meaningful improvements in their diocese. The Catholic News Agency reported that Bishop Boden currently holds the position of vice president of the German Bishops' Conference. He also said that all couples who are unable or unwilling to marry in a church but wish to put their relationship under a church blessing are encouraged to contact them. Bishop Boden noted that lay people would soon be able to baptize infants and regularly preach at sermons.

Another German prelate, Bishop Heiner Wilmer of Hildesheim, extended his support by informing the staff in his diocese: "It is of tremendous significance to me that LGBTQ individuals are accompanied liturgically, pastorally, and spiritually. He is reportedly happy to see that the Synodal Way has approved the formation of a task force to develop a handout for blessing celebrations for s same-sex couples and remarried divorcees.

According to the Catholic World Report, a resolution to develop and grant Church blessings to same-sex unions was approved by the German bishops and other delegates of the Synodal Way on Friday of the previous week, Mar. 10. The gathering title is "Blessing ceremonies for couples who love each other." As mentioned, just nine of the 58 bishops voted against the measure, while 11 refrained from voting either way.

Also Read: Church of England's General Synod Meets to Address Same-Sex Proposals; Archbishop Urges Unity

About Synodal Way

As per First Things.com, the Synodal process will seek measures to strengthen Christian witness and started in December 2019. Because it is thought to be so crucial for the Church's continued existence, the organizers moved swiftly to implement a decentralized, regional, and online model at the beginning of the pandemic. 

As part of the process, focus groups are held to discuss the following topics:

  •  Authority and division of power within the Church;

  • The existence of priests in modern society; 

  • The role of women in church ministry and offices; 

  • Flourishing relationships, including living love in sexuality and partnership. 

Accordingly, it is essential to note that three of these four themes concern individuals hired by the Church and, as a result, more or less clerical topics. Despite the urgent plea made by Pope Francis, the subject of evangelization still needs to be cut. There is some discussion of evangelization in the papers generated by the Synodal Method; nevertheless, how it is discussed varies. Before the Church can move forward with evangelization, the majority of those who took part in the Synod, including bishops as well as other participants, believe that the institution of the Church needs to transform its way of life and methods of operation, if not in their beliefs and professions of faith. Although Pope St. Paul VI authored Evangelii nuntiandi 45 years ago, the Germans think that a great deal of progress needs to be made before they can get to the first responsibility and primary vocation of the Church.

Related Article: Cardinal Hollerich Emphasizes Synod as Symphony, Conversion During Conclusion of Asian Continental Assembly on Synodality