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GERMAN BISHOPS OUTLINE VIEWS ON HUMAN SEXUALITY.

13 DECEMBER 2019, THE TABLET

by Christa Pongratz-Lippitt

A key group of German bishops attended an experts’ consultation on how to discuss human sexuality in both scientific and theological terms in Berlin from 3-4 December. Organised by the bishops’ conference’s commission for marriage and the family, as a prelude to the synodal procedure involving clergy and laity that begins in January 2020, the bishops agreed according to their post-consultation statement “that people’s sexual preference developed during adolescence and took on a hetero- or homosexual form. Both belonged to the normal forms of a sexual predisposition which is unalterable and should not be changed by specific socialisation.”

The Berlin consultation was organised together with the Institute for Christian Ethics and Politics (IPEC) and attended by Archbishop Heiner Koch of Berlin, who is in charge of family affairs in the German bishops’ conference, Bishop Franz-Josef Bode of Osnabrück, Bishop Wolfgang Ipolt of Görlitz and Bishop Peter Kohlgraf of Mainz, as well as several auxiliary bishops together with medical experts and theologians. It is part of the two-year German “synodal procedure” on church reform that was launched on the first Sunday of Advent.

An explanatory text plus a summary of the consultation was immediately published on the bishops’ conference’s website. The commission for marriage and the family had wanted – “already in the preparatory phase” of the synodal procedure – to contribute to the discussions on sexual morality and to “discuss the subject from the medical, anthropological and moral-theological point of view as also to go into church teaching on sexual morality, its history and background”, the bishops’ conference’s text explained.

It continued: “The chairman of the commission for marriage and the family, Archbishop Heiner Koch, emphasised that it was imperative for the synodal procedure to begin impartially and without fixed positions but not without knowledge of the present state of science… the bishops agreed that people’s sexual preference was formed during puberty when it took on a hetero- or homosexual form which is unalterable … This means that all forms of discrimination against homosexuals must be rejected, as church teaching demands and as Pope Francis expressly emphasised in Amoris Laetitia.”

However, the statement went on to delineate areas of disagreement over the implications of this position: “The bishops did not agree, however, on whether present church teaching, which forbids the practice of homosexuality, was still up-to-date. They also differed on the question of whether or not the use of artificial birth control was permitted in marriage or in co-habitation. Archbishop Koch and Bishop Bode underlined the importance of a sound discussion supported by theology and the human sciences and highlighted the developments that could already be found in Amoris Laetitia. Thus a sexual relationship after divorce and remarriage was no longer always a grave sin, neither did it always mean that the person concerned could no longer receive the Eucharist, they recalled.”

The results of the Berlin consultation will flow into the synodal procedure’s forum on “Life in succeeding relationships – Living love in sexuality and partnership.”

PAT SAYS

I think it is very commendable that the German bishops are discussing these topics openly and with input from experts in the fields of medicine, psychology and genetics.

A modern authentic theology must develop in dialogue with all branches of knowledge.

We cannot have a 21st century theology based on the lack of knowledge and information from biblical and other sources from the time before Christ lived.

Of course we must have an authentic theology of sexual morality and sin. And it would be false, morally simply to make all sexual morality and sin purely subjective.

And at the same time we cannot have a theology that is based on ignoring the achievements of science and new knowledge.

As Christian’s we believe that alll knowledge comes from God and God speaks to us in everything, including scientific and knowledge developments.

Any relationship that is founded on love is good, because God is love.

75 replies on “GERMAN BISHOPS OUTLINE VIEWS ON HUMAN SEXUALITY.”

2.44: It may not be you Magna at 11.42 but you’re still a prick! At 2.44am were you sozzled? You becime more pitiable by the day. What work exhausted you today after your hospital visitarions yesterday? Being repulsive? It sure does exhaust the energy levels.

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A very strang comment. Sin involves thoughts, words or actions, not BEING something. You might as well say diabetes is sinful.

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2.46: Here we go again….drunken crap. Pat, spare us a repeat of yesterday. You are facilitating someone who is in full breakdown. Please stop.

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Thank you for sharing. There is enough in that lavishly produced publication crying out for deconstruction to keep this blog going for the rest of our natural lives! I particularly appreciated the recipe page for cooking up something sweet and toothsome to present to your parish priest, but don’t think a strawberry tart is what Father would be hoping for! Then there is the pious bull-shit: whoever encouraged that poor lad in his first year to write about Maria Goretti with the happy end for her rapist-murderer? She was the victim of horrific child abuse aged nine, and where did her abuser end up but in a monastery? So all’s well that ends well, eh?

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12.37
‘…with the happy end for her rapist-murderer.’?
Rapist-murderer-paedophile.
Like too many Romanist priest-pimps: rapists-sodomisers-soul murderers-suicide stirrers-paedophile-ephphbophile-men.

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Best looking

1. Michael Byrne (Gorgeous)
2. Kevin McElroy (Horny Andy)
3. John Acton
4. Stephen Wilson (kildorrery)

Worst looking

1. Brendan Marshall
2. Sean Jones (King Puck)
3. Barry Matthews
4. Mark Moriarty

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Kevin Connolly should be in the Best Looking category……he’s a total r***. Can see why they call him Lumberjack man.

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Morning girls, a hot topic for discussion today. Speaking of hot topics, will someone tell me the game played to be ordained. Lollipop Joe, is it camogie, or hockey or gymnastics? I’m a great hockey player. Or is it netball or basketball or maybe tiddlywinks😉? Do tell. I’m waiting with bated breath.😯 What must I do, to be holy like you?😇

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Bishoos indeed Bless them hi. They are commenting on an existing reality not telling God how it should be calcified. People need to look for the Jesus who fulfilled the law and not paragraph 2.6 section 700000 to justify a projected subjective judgement but. Hi

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8:34
Hello hi fly.
Begorra fly you have me flummoxed. Bless the bishoos indeed but
Paragraph 2.6 section 700000 of what. The special secrets pharisic act rule book written in stone or what.
Is that still on the go. Put Jesus first and all these things shall be added onto you.
Bye bye hi fly.

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Magwa: If you are referring to the “Pontifical Secret” rulebook, it was abolished today. It’s been reported though that rather than require RC clergy to positively take an initiative to proactively report abuse to civil authority the requirement now is that they cooperate by revealing what they know: presumably when asked.
So while not wholehearted change, at least it’s a start.
MMM

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Well Archbishop Koch is just plain wrong. Our mother wanted her son to dress up and play at Mass so they would grow up to be priests. I preferred (at age 5 or 6) to dress up and play with boys. And I still do 😍
Typical clergy, ignoring that they’ve dragged up for the event.

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But you’re certainly not one to talk. Have regard to Proverbs Chapter 6 –
“There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him”, and the first on the list is haughty eyes.

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2:10
Hello there MMM.
Begorra you might be right. The pontifical secrets act paragraph 2.6 section 700000 might be scrapped.
But what I want to know is how hi fly knew before anyone else. Is hi fly on th wall in the Vatican. You’d never know.
Nothing would surprise me MMM.
Bye bye MMM.

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I posted this on yesterday’s blog about abuse in Japan, but it’a more pertinent to this theme today.

So, here it is again.

It’s very interesting to read this article in The Tablet.
https://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/12290/german-bishops-outline-views-on-human-sexuality

It’s a bit stilted in language, I guess because it has probably been translated from some tortuous German original, but it seems to say that in Germany, at least, there are discussions going on, in preparation for their synod, of a re-evaluation of sexuality and sexual teaching, that has implications for our understanding of where a person’s sexuality comes from, and also how people live in relationships, and how they might still belong to the Church. It’s good to see people trying to catch up with our understanding these days of sexuality and sexual function and relationship, rather than trying to shoehorn everything in to an increasingly discredited traditional understanding and application. I know there will be many who will say that scripture and tradition are the only forward and that anything outside those parameters is erroneous, but surely these things have to be understood and interpreted in our current understanding of these very crucial aspects of human nature ? It’s good to see, at least from my reading, that there is some willingness in Germany to have these discussions, rather than just resort to one man, one woman, in marriage, missionary position etc., as the model for all people, and judging anything and anyone outside those tight constraints as necessarily intrinsically disordered and sinful. Which means most of us !

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I can never understand the hubris, arrogance and self-entitlement of the Germans. After the “Reformation” and WWI and especially WWI they should sit permanently in sackcloth and ashes.

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Blaming the children for the sins of the parents was rejected as far back as the early sixth century BCE and the prophet Ezechiel. See especially Ch. 18 for the development of the concept of personal responsibility.

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12.30
Don’t be a fool: the Germans weren’t responsible for the Protestant Reformation; that would principally have been the fat, little-boy-loving pervert, and party-dude, Pope Leo XIII. His tyrannical conduct made schism inevitable.
As for WWII, had the Treaty of Versailles not been so vengeful and punitive, the social conditions for anarchy in a poverty-stricken, post WWI Germany would not have been created and the Nazi Party would likely have drawn much less national support.

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8.55 @ Magna Carta
Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) responsible for the (Protestant) Reformation of 1517?
There’s only one thing worse than a sterile dilettante chancing his arm about biblical subjects: chancing his arm about ecclesiastical history.

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Well, Nora, we’ll be sure to keep it on the top shelf when you’re around. What’s your fancy, Catholic Fireside or the good old Messenger? Nothing too demanding.

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11.34
What an utterly stupid and xenophobic comment!
I bet you’re one of those who voted to remain in the EU.
My prescription for your myopia: avoid all episodes of Dad’s Army, and absolutely do not watch THAT episode of Fawlty Towers.

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Pat, please correct the spelling of ‘Bishops’ in your title. It says ‘Bishoos’ and it’s driving me crazy. I’m on the scale and poor spelling upsets me greatly. Sorry!

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Luther knew nothing of the concept of homosexuality as he predated it by at least four centuries, so he didn’t excoriate it.
Luther presumed everyone was heterosexually inclined. He condemned same-sex sexual activity because of this lens through which he viewed it.
No one expects nuance from you at 9:11. However, such anachronistic and anomalous ranting leaves so much to be desired.

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Luther knew nothing of the concept of homosexuality as he predated it by at least four centuries, so he didn’t excoriate it.
Luther presumed everyone was heterosexually inclined. He condemned same-sex sexual activity because of this lens through which he viewed it.
No one expects nuance from you at 9:11. However, such anachronistic and anomalous ranting leaves so much to be desired.

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The bishops believe that sexual preference develops during adolesence? Well, often, but not always. Some reach puberty before this phase.
But what has sexual preference to do with sexuality? They are not the same.

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12.36. Magna, you’re still in the prepubescent cycle. Wait till you really grow up! What a world awaits you. You’ll be overwhelmed and exhausted in the real world of connectivity and demands and love and caring….you’ll fragment even further. OMG!!!

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9.25
Awk, Josie love! You had my heart racing there with high expectation…that you were on the cusp of saying something intelligent. 😆

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However well intentioned by some German bishops, this will go nowhere. They are to be commended for making some concessions to reality unlike the spineless apparatchiks say in Ireland and E & W, but the need to go on pretending that the Church is incapable of ever being wrong on anything will close the ranks. The discussion leading up to Paul VI’s disastrous and mendacious proclamation of Humane Vitae in 1968 was an opportunity for fulfilling Vatican II’s call to open and honest engagement: the bishops blew it, and anybody with any gumption left. Nor are the Anglicans an inspiring role model. They give plenty of space to bigots and loonies, and the sisterhood, having got themselves ordained, are pretty complacent about the rights of others, being happy to quote biblical injunctions, which if observed to the letter, would have prohibited their own “call to ministry”. For Heaven’s sake, even the British Conservative Party gets it over the gay issue. Apparently the new UK Parliament has the highest proportion of gays of anywhere in the world. Nice, eh? It’s the DUP who just look ridiculous.

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Pat you always said you didn’t know Magna, yet he now tells us you have his email address.
Surely that means you both can correspond.

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Why the need to call names Magna ?…I just asked a question.
My email is my name, perhaps you have more than one email.
Happy Christmas, I do like reading most of your comments.

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German Bishops following in the footsteps of Luther, not Christ. These prelates are for the birds and obviously have no supernatural faith

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3.54

How in Hades are the German bishops following in the footsteps of Luther? If you knew more than his name, you would know, too, that Luther excoriated the practice of homosexuality.

The absolute ignoramuses that post here sometimes. Mind-boggling.😕

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Luther knew nothing of the concept of homosexuality as he predated it by at least four centuries, so he didn’t excoriate it.
Luther presumed everyone was heterosexually inclined. He condemned same-sex sexual activity because of this lens through which he viewed it.
No one expects nuance from you at 9:11. However, such anachronistic and anomalous ranting leaves so much to be desired.

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8.48pm. The ultimate personification of comete dysfunctionalit – poorvsod Carta is getting closer to his demise. The hatred in his heart (drink fuelled) is killing him. And what a sad story when he’s found – alone, miserable, scraggy, unkept…..eaten by the worms of envy, jealousy, hate, anger. God help you, Magna.

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10:27
The EEC became the EU in 1993. Where have you been since then? And it’s bordering on racism to refer to the Irish as Paddies or to the Germans as Fritz.

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