The Synodal Path is in contradiction to Vatican II

A break with the Council

The Synodal Path is in Contradiction to Vatican II – Part III of the Debate on Current Forms of Synodality.

Synodal Assembly by Peter C. Düren

The Synodal Way claims to stand firmly on the foundation of the Second Vatican Council: "The texts of the Council remain authoritative for today's reflection on the people of God and the priestly ministry" (Priestly Existence). But a closer look at the texts proves the exact opposite. So it says in the plot text "The celibacy of the priests": "A higher value of the celibate way of life can no longer be responsibly represented at least since the Second Vatican Council." Is that correct? No! In fact, the Council says exactly the opposite, namely that the alumni (the candidates for the priesthood) "must clearly recognize the primacy of virginity consecrated to Christ" (OT 10).

Bending of Council statements

Is the bending of Council statements an unfortunate slip-up? no way. The agreed basic text "Priestly Existence Today" claims: "It is no coincidence that the decree on priesthood of the Second Vatican Council does not consistently use the term priest ('sacerdos') for the office holder, but 'presbyter' (elder, authorized person)". With this one wants to claim a change in the image of the priest by the Council away from a sacred cult servant to a functionary in the community.

However, this statement is flat untruth. So it says in the aforementioned decree: "Every priest represents Christ according to his level of ordination" (PO 12), and in Latin the term "presbyter" is not used here, as claimed, but "sacerdos"! From the Council's point of view, the term "presbyter" in no way replaces the term "sacerdos", but is used to distinguish it from the "episcopus", both of which have a share in the "sacerdotium" (cf. PO 7).

A sacerdotal understanding of the priest

The decree further exhorts "all priests to strive for ever greater holiness by the appropriate means recommended by the Church" (PO 12); and again the term in the original Latin is “omnes sacerdotes”. There is also talk of the "priestly ministry" ("sacerdotali officio") which Christ conferred on ordained priests "for the offering of sacrifice" (PO 2). The Council text speaks of the "priests as educators in the faith" (PO 6) - "sacerdotes, qua in fide educatores". And so on.

The false and misleading reference to Vatican II is a scandal; it is deceit on the believers. According to the teaching of the Council, the priesthood is by no means just a functional office of an "elder", but includes a sacerdotal understanding of the priest as the one who offers the Eucharistic sacrifice, as the Council teaches when it speaks of the "mystery of the Eucharistic sacrifice", "whose offering is the primary [!] task of the priest" (PO 13); and again the original mentions the “sacerdotes”.

Fantasy Council of the synodalists

However, when the Council declares the offering of the Eucharistic sacrifice to be the main task of the priests, the assertion of the Synodal Path is untrue that the Council has “overcome a sacerdotal-cultic understanding of office” (Basic Text Women 5.2). And so the apparently deliberate deception of believers continues. The Synodal Path recognizes that the Council changed the "attitude towards ... atheism" and asserts: "The Second Vatican Council ... no longer defines or excludes or pronounces condemnations" (orientation text Auf dem Weg... 57). This is also factually wrong, because the Council declares that the Church "clearly rejects atheism" (GS 21), but invites atheists to "appreciate the gospel of Christ impartially".

The imaginary council to which the synodal members refer does not exist. Of course, the Council also pronounces condemnations elsewhere when it declares: "Abortion and killing of the child are despicable crimes" (GS 51; cf. 79, LG 48). The Synodal Way refers untruthfully to the Council by imputing teachings to it, even though the Council teaches the exact opposite. In addition, it contains views that are generally in contradiction to the Council, for example when the Synodal Path sets up the new teaching: "Same-sex sexuality - also realized in sexual acts - is therefore not a sin that separates from God, and it is not considered to be judged badly” (doctrinal text  Reassessment of Catholic teaching on homosexuality).

Council and Synodal Path in conflict

The Council does not mention homosexuality anywhere, but only because it is clear to the council that the "intimate union as a mutual gift of two people" (GS 48) is only legitimate before God in the marriage of man and woman. Whoever wants to be faithful to the Council cannot at the same time commit to the contents of the Synodal Way - the statements are mutually exclusive. Moreover, the synodal path should also be consistent and not only demand a change in the catechism, but also a deletion of words from Holy Scripture, the Word of God to which the Catechism ultimately refers (Gen 19:1-29; Rom 1, 24-27; 1 Cor 6:9-19; 1 Tim 1:10).

As a source of knowledge of faith, the Bible serves the synodal path rather marginally. According to the teaching of the Council, divine revelation contained in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition is complete (cf. DV 4, 7-10). In contrast, the Synodal Path explains that "in the sense of faith of the believers, a self-communication of God occurs again and again" (orientation text Auf dem Weg...), whereby the "signs of the times" are invented as a new source of revelation in addition to Scripture and tradition .

Cathcon: the fundamental Synodalist heresy.

Permanent change of belief

The logical consequence of this view is that what yesterday was proclaimed to be a sin (for example, homosexual acts) can be considered blessed today; that teachings that were claimed to be infallible yesterday are now to be regarded as discriminatory and therefore sinful (e.g. the exclusion of women from the sacrament of Holy Orders). However, such an understanding of permanent change in the content of faith has nothing in common with the teaching of the Council.

For Vatican II presents the teaching on the primacy and infallibility of the pope “again to be firmly believed by all believers” (LG 18). What was once infallibly taught remains infallible for all time and is not subject to the zeitgeist. And primacy means that both the bishops and the faithful must obey the pope if he asks them to do so in ecclesiastical matters, for example if he explicitly forbids the establishment of synodal councils at all levels.

Synodal path has divided Catholics in Germany

After a provisional institution of leadership had already been created with the synodal path, which should deliberately not be based on canon law, a permanent body is to be created with the synodal council, which will carry out the bishop’s leadership office through a collective body made up of bishops, priests and lay people replaced. Figuratively speaking, the Bishops handed in their pastoral crooks at the cloakroom in Frankfurt.

They are morally only allowed to abstain from voting if something doesn't suit them. And a few episcopal no votes are tolerated as long as this does not prevent the passage of synod resolutions. When Bishop Georg Bätzing asks in the press conference: "What are we taking away from them with the decisions we make?" the answer is quite simple: unity in faith, in the sacraments and in church leadership. The Synodal Path has divided the Catholics in Germany - and that's called a schism. As Bätzing also said: "No one wants to raise you into a reality in which you are strangers."


Cathcon: The texts of Vatican II have enough problems of their own without adding to them....