In the run-up to the synod on the family

Preview of the new season "this site Bible"

In the run-up to the synod on the family

Dr. Gunther Fleischer (left) in conversation © DR

Four weeks before the start of the Family Synod in the Vatican, another season of "our site-Bible – explorations, explanations, settings" on the topic of marriage, family, sexuality. Sundays on the radio and here to listen to and read about.

The expectations for the synod held on 4. October in the Vatican beginning 14. Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops are high. For three weeks, bishops will address the topic of "The vocation and mission of the family in the church and the world today". The course of the extraordinary synod last fall, as well as the questionnaires sent out twice, have shown that there is much need for discussion here and that tempers are running high on some irritant topics.

Christina Cherry
Diligence, meticulousness and passion to the end

The church historian Arnold Angenendt © Cristian Gennari (KNA)

To his students he always said "No TV! Read!"Laziness of thought was anathema to the church historian Angenendt. With meticulousness and passion, he turned church history research upside down – to its rescue.

Even in the small potato fields of the Lower Rhine, great thinkers can get their start. Arnold Angenendt is such a person. With his weak stature, he was not suited for farming, his parents judged. So after the end of the war in 1945, the mother cycled to the episcopal boarding school Gaesdonck, eight kilometers away, and enrolled her son. A bicycle trip with considerable consequences for research in church history in Germany: The lanky farmer's son from Asperden developed into one of the most renowned church historians of the present day. This Monday Arnold Angenendt turns 85 years old.

Christina Cherry
To church as if for an espresso

In "godless Berlin," writer Franz-Josef Wagner goes to church "like for an espresso". He still feels a connection to the church.

Franz-Josef Wagner (76), Axel Springer columnist and writer, says he still feels connected to the church. "The church was the highlight of my childhood week," he told the "Suddeutsche Zeitung" in an interview. Even today, "in this godless Berlin," he goes to the Catholic church: "I'm there for ten minutes, as if for an espresso." Asked if he was going to confession, Wagner explained:

Christina Cherry

It is a painful process: for the victims, some of whom have kept silent for decades out of shame. And for the Jesuit order itself, facing a severe test. It has been just two weeks since the first cases of abuse at Canisius College in Berlin came to light.

Since then, the scandal has spread to the order's other two schools: St. Blasien in the Black Forest and the Aloisius College in Bonn. In addition, there is the St. Ansgar School in Hamburg, which was run by Jesuits until 1993. The official course of the order seems clear. The public confession of some victims makes an investigation procedure for the complete clarification of the abuse cases "possible and compelling," emphasized the highest-ranking Jesuit representative in Germany, Father Stefan Dartmann. He apologized to the victims in the name of the order. And at the same time he asked for forgiveness for "what those responsible in the Order at the time failed to do in terms of taking a necessary and close look and reacting appropriately. This double admission of personal guilt of individuals and the failure of the religious community meets with approval especially among the younger Jesuit generation. Only an investigation of the crimes "without regard for one's own reputation or possible financial consequences" would help now, writes the rector of the Munich School of Philosophy, Michael Bordt, in an open letter. In the crisis, the 49-year-old insists, there is also an opportunity. Here the strengths of the order could show themselves anew: the commitment to faith and justice, to truth and values.

Christina Cherry
Keeping those affected in mind

Jesuit Klaus Mertes © Julia Steinbrecht (KNA)

Jesuit Father Klaus Mertes criticizes what he sees as "fear-driven crisis management" by the bishops in coming to terms with sexual abuse. "Church language in dealing with abuse often marginalizes," Mertes criticized Friday in Bonn.

At the ZdK plenary assembly in Bonn, Mertes said: "If the abuse crisis is defined as a credibility crisis, we are already back to the institution and not to the people concerned."He does not deny that the church is in a crisis of credibility. "But it will not be overcome if the goal is mere restoration of credibility."

Christina Cherry

Next Monday will mark nine months since the Ettal monastery in Upper Bavaria confirmed allegations of physical and sexual violence from circles of former boarding school students. Since then, the arduous process of coming to terms with a dark past has been underway. The religious community now wants to drill deeper again. For this it has engaged the former federal interrogation judge Hans-Joachim Jentsch.

The 73-year-old from Wiesbaden has been commissioned by the monks to look through all documented cases and to research weak points in the system. This he is to do "in the closest possible contact" the association "Ettaler abuse and abuse victims", it is said. In the past, the Benedictines have been subjected to sometimes fierce accusations from victims. The preliminary final report has been available since July, but questions remain: Why was nothing made public for so long? How could it come so far at all?

Christina Cherry

Papal child protection commission urges tougher consequences for bishops who don't punish sexual abuse hard enough in their dioceses. The Gemium meets until Sunday in the Vatican.

Since Pope John Paul II. In 2002, when John Paul summoned American cardinals to the Vatican for an emergency meeting on the abuse scandals, the church's approach to sexual assault has changed radically. John Paul's second successor, Francis, continues to see a need to catch up, as evidenced by the establishment of an abuse commission to put prevention measures to the test and make suggestions to the pope on how to improve them. On Saturday and Sunday it will deliberate at its first plenary session.

Christina Cherry

Shakira does it, Roger Federer does it too – Nana Mouskouri has been doing it for a while: With their prominent names, they are committed to the children's relief organization UNICEF, probably the most prominent organization of the United Nations. She turns 60 on Monday. – On the occasion of its founding day, the Children's Fund called for increased investment in the education of girls and women. In many countries in Asia and Africa, being born a girl is tantamount to a death sentence, explained Heide Simonis, Chairwoman of UNICEF Germany.

Christina Cherry
The extent in black and white

Again, data was collected and the scale made tangible: After several abuse scandals in recent years, the Belgian Bishops' Conference published a 400-page report on the subject Tuesday.

Hundreds of victims of sexual abuse "have finally had the courage to talk about it in recent years," said Brussels Cardinal Jozef De Kesel at the launch. Above all, he said, it's about acknowledging the damage to victims, their helplessness in the face of the perpetrator, the silence to which they have been condemned, and the damage to their personal development.

Christina Cherry

Hardly a day goes by without new cases of abuse becoming known. The phenomenon of sexual abuse is obviously much more widespread than amed. How do Catholic educational institutions deal with this ie??

Mrs Dr. Marianne Genenger-Stricker is a professor of education and dean of the Catholic School of Social Work in Aachen, Germany. In an interview with this site, she explains that the topic of abuse is firmly anchored in the study regulations. Theoretical knowledge about the consequences of abuse is imparted, and preventive measures are also presented: "We try to impart methodical competence to act. However, it is also about the psychological care of the perpetrators. Genenger-Stricker emphasized that it is very important at the university to convey a professional attitude: "We offer places where students can deal with their own person, their relationships and with their images of masculinity and femininity."When asked about prevention, Genenger-Stricker says that, on the one hand, the university follows a gender-sensitive pedagogy in its work with children and young people. This means dealing openly with the topic of sexuality in practice and promoting the physical self-determination of children and adolescents in the process. This is the only way they can defend themselves in dangerous situations. Abuse checklist In addition, she said, it is important to prepare professionals well to recognize dangerous situations among colleagues: An internal checklist for all employees could help. Social institutions should adopt standardized procedures to avoid such cases. Genenger-Stricker emphasizes that clear agreements, including a written commitment, are fundamental. It's also important, he said, to establish an independent complaints office not only for students but also for staff members."There is no such thing as the perpetrator monster" replies Ms. Genenger-Stricker when asked if it is possible to filter out people with pathological tendencies during their studies. "These are completely normal people, we experience that over and over again, who are also friendly towards."In advance, one can hardly say anything from the outside. But research has shown that people who have been sexually abused themselves are in danger of abusing later. "That's where the moment of power plays a big role. In general, sexual abuse is about acting out power in the context of addicts," says Genenger-StrickerThere is therefore psychological counseling at the Aachen University of Applied Sciences for those who discover inclinations in themselves. Students would also often be motivated to take advantage of opportunities for self-reflection and the decision to seek therapy. On the question whether it already advised students not to become active in the youth work, explains Genenger Stricker that there is already to the beginning of study the seminar ?occupation-referred self-experience?. The topic of sexual abuse is addressed there. Later in the study supervisions are additionally prescribed, with which also again one would inquire.

Christina Cherry