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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Diocese of Linz press spokeman resigns- the cleanout required by Rome begins

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From Uppper Austrian News

As Upper Austrian News exclusively reported, the presumed member of the liberal camp and Head of the Communications Office of the Diocese of Linz, Ferdinand Kaineder has to go. He has been “relieved of his functions” since last Tuesday says the official website of the diocese. Bishop Ludwig Schwarz cannot be reached for a statement: Because he was ill, the secretary broke the news.

Kaineder was appointed Head of the Communications Office under Bishop Maximilian Aichen, the predecessor to Schwarz Conservative ecclesiastical circles were at loggerheads with him again and again. Among other things, they criticised a cd mailed in 2006 to 15,000 young Catholics in Upper Austria. The cards contained some surprising statements about sexuality. Specifically that discrimination against homosexuals could not be justified on the basis of Christian principles and on contraception, there was a note: "We live in the 21st Century ". One group used the CD to launch a boycott of the church tax and to demand the resignation of Kaineder. The Communications Office was responsible for the content of the CD.

Officially, it was, Bishop Schwarz on Tuesday who decided after several discussions to make a personnel change with regard to his spokesperson and the management of the communications office of the Diocese of Linz. Kaineder was told on Monday that he was “relieved” of his functions. His former deputy Gabriele Eder-Cakl takes over the leadership and will take further the diocesan communication concept. She spoke in a initial statement of a "difficult time". She was "very disappointed" because the decision to dismiss Kaineder was taken on the basis of "denunciation".

In information given by Kaineder to diocesan staff, Schwarz had taken his decision on the grounds that "from one side" it is still the case that the youth-CD card is the grounds for great reproach and even to this day letters and questions arrive. Kaineder also can be seen by many as a strong representative of the so-called "Linz Way" and the spokesman of the bishop must completely identify with the tasks, views and statements of the bishop.

Kaineder stated that, he would not deny that from a certain website in the last few years, a veritable "defamation" campaign had been conducted against him personally in his capacity as head of the communications office and what still causes him a lot more pain, against his purely voluntary activity that he undertook in Kirchschlag Parish Church as the Chairman of the Church Council and Honorary Chaplain (he took to reading the Gospel and preaching even after a ban from the Bishop on lay preaching). He was really surprised and disappointed that in recent years "above" had given more credibility to the informers than to their own colleague. That these international internet networks have good, yes, the best contacts in Rome, was now quite well known. He can see and experience this kind of "merciless reporting" as a real threat to an open, dialogical Church, with faith in God turned unconditionally towards the people.

Kaineder is 52 years old. He studied theology and held various posts in the Diocese of Linz, inter alia, as an education lecturer at the Petrinum (1978-80), as a pastoral assistant in the Cathedral Parish (1982-92), at the same time training theology students (1989-2000) and since 2000 has been operating as the Head of the Communications Office. He could not yet provide details on his professional future.


The sheer quality of the work of Mr Kaineder can be seen in the subtility and his originality of the use of bananas to promote Catholicism.

He already has his own website offering group and individual communications coaching.
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Visions of a Catholicism with a powerless Papacy, seeking secular goals, following Protestant paths.
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