Agreement more distant than ever

The "chief dogmatist" of the traditionalist Pius Brotherhood in Germany, Father Matthias Gaudron, rejects the opening of the Catholic Church to other religions desired by Pope Francis.

Talks between the Vatican and the Pius brothers are currently on hold, the theologian said Friday in an interview with spiegel online. He expressed criticism of the pope's statements on homosexuality and his warning against faith as an ideology. The Catholic Church in Germany will collapse in 15 to 20 years, Gaudron said, because it has no new priests and the faithful are becoming fewer and fewer.

'Many say the church would regain members if it opened up'. But if that were the case, people should be flocking to Protestant churches en masse," Gaudron said. The noncommittal has no strength and cannot inspire.

Gaudron evaluated the Pope's rejection of an exaggerated search for security in faith as "very problematic. "If the only dogmatic certainty is to be that God is God in man, I think that is a bit little," he said. "Even the pope cannot change the truth of the creed."In an interview, Pope Francis had warned against an "exaggerated search for certainty in doctrine"; also, one should not "doggedly seek the lost past". "In this way, the faith becomes one ideology among many."

Controversial topic homosexuality

On the subject of homosexuality, Gaudron reproached the pope for a contradictory attitude. On the one hand, he claims that he accepts the teaching of the Catholic Church. On the other hand, Francis gives the impression that it is okay to be homosexual. "Either I adhere to the doctrine, then I can not approve of homosexuality, or I let it be. But then I am no longer Catholic."

Gaudron appealed to the Pope to guarantee the right of priests to celebrate the old Mass. The theologian also blames the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Muller, for the fact that the talks between the Pius brothers and the Vatican are currently on ice. "He does not like us. He has been hostile to us since he has been in Rome."

The Priestly Fraternity of St. Pius X. was founded in 1969 by French Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre (1905-1991). She rejects the reforms of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). Main points of contention are liturgy, religious freedom and ecumenism. In 1975, Rome withdrew the brotherhood's ecclesiastical license.

After unauthorized priestly ordinations, Lefebvre was banned from exercising his episcopal office in 1976. By ordaining four priests of his brotherhood as bishops in 1988 without papal approval, all five incurred excommunication. Pope Benedict XVI. lifted the excommunication of the bishops of the Pius Fraternity in 2009 as a gesture of reconciliation. Since the end of 2009, there have been several rounds of talks with representatives of the Fraternity at the Vatican on controversial doctrinal ies. Since spring 2012, the process has apparently come to a standstill.

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Christina Cherry
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