Although the Pope only addressed some brief impromptu words to the Delegation, he handed them the address he prepared for the occasion Photo: Vatican Media

Pope Francis to German Catholics: Two Aspects Not to Go Astray in the Synodal Path

Pope highlights care of the spiritual dimension and the universal dimension to German communicators

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Joachin Meisner Hertz

(ZENIT News / Vatican City, 04.01.2024).- On Thursday morning, January 4, Pope Francis received in audience a Delegation from the Society of Catholic Publicists of Germany, on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of its foundation.



Although the Pope only addressed some brief impromptu words to the Delegation, he handed them the address he prepared for the occasion. In his address the Pope focuses on the subject of the German Synodal Path, and said: “The Church in Germany has undertaken a Synod Path, about which I wrote a letter in 2019, which I hope will be better known, meditated upon and implemented, as it expresses two aspects that I consider fundamental in order not to go astray.”

Then the Holy Father developed those two aspects: “First of all, care for the spiritual dimension, that is, the real and constant adaptation to the Gospel and not to the models of the world, rediscovering personal and community conversion through the Sacraments and prayer, docility to the Holy Spirit and not to the spirit of the times. And then the universal, Catholic dimension, so as not to conceive the life of faith as something relative only to one’s own cultural and national sphere. From this point of view, participation in the universal synodal process is good. Catholic communicators have a valuable role to play in such situations: providing accurate information, they can contribute to clarifying misunderstandings and above all preventing them from arising, helping mutual understanding rather than opposition.”



And he adds: “In any case, it is important not to have an introverted attitude, but rather to “go forth” to bring the Christian message to every sphere of life, using the media and possibilities available today. A Church that is occupied primarily with herself sickens with self-absorption. Instead, the Church is mission, and Catholic communicators cannot but get involved and remain, so to speak, “neutral” with regard to the message they transmit. I like to recall, in this regard, that “the impartiality of media is merely an appearance; only those who go out of themselves in their communication can become a true point of reference” (Message for the 48th World Communications Day, 24 January 2014).

The Pope’s words came on the same day that the German newspaper Die Tagespost published part of an interview with the Prefect of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith, in which the latter affirmed, in regard to the German Synodal Way, that the German (Bishops) seem to feel “particularly enlightened.”

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