(ZENIT News / Berlin, 28.09.2023).- The Weltkirche2022 Annual Report of the Episcopal Conference’s Commission for support outside of Germany, published on September 15, shows that German Catholic dioceses, Religious Orders and Institutions for international aid, donated 673 million euros last year to finance pastoral, social and development projects worldwide.
The Weltkirche Commission is made up of representatives of the German Episcopal Conference, dioceses, the German Conferenceof Superiors of Religious Orders and aid organizations such as Adveniat, Caritas Internationalis, Die Sternsinger (children’s missionary organization), Misereor, Missio Aachen ,Missio Munich, Renovabis and Bonifatiuswerk.Also cooperating are other associations of general vision in various international endeavours.
They support projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Reported in detail as well are actions in situations of war and violence, where work is done to help the needy and where life and faith are promoted in such tragic environments. The Report includes testimonies of people working for the reconciliation of antagonistic groups, from charity to the accompaniment of refugees. Many organizations of the Catholic Church promote reflection and the necessity of violent defense in some cases, united to the Christian message of peace.
Monsignor Bertram Meier, President of the Conference’s Weltkirche Commission and Bishop of Augsburg, explained the high range of German Catholics’ commitment to the universal Church. “This transborder solidarity forms part absolutely of our mission as Church. We want to continue guaranteeing it in the future.” He also explained the valuable contribution of the faithful. “I thank all those that have contributed with donations, large and small, exercising solidarity with the needy worldwide.”
The Report details the origin and destiny of the resources obtained. They come primarily from donations of associations, parish collections and the Church’s tax revenues. The Church’s collections for specific international projects contributed 29 million euros. The German Episcopal Conference and individual dioceses supported them with tax funds worth 47.8 million euros. The donations go the Catholic organizations supporting projects that stimulate development in communities and to Religious Orders, which in 2022 amounted to 425 million euros. Grants were also awarded to ecclesiastical development projects and aid to emergency and disaster cases.
Monsignor Meier thanked the State Authorities for the trust placed in this endeavour carried out by the Church with professionalism. He also mentioned the commitment of many volunteers in parishes, associations and schools that collect funds, expression of evangelical charity and human sensitivity in the work of the universal Church. In addition, he explained that there are direct contributions of individuals, parishes and associations to programs of the Church, especially in Eastern Europe which are not registered and elevate the extent of the aid contributed to the whole world.