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Two Synods: One on the Amazon, One in Germany

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Two synods are beginning that will have serious consequences for the unity of the Church.

The first is called “Amazon Synod,” but it is public knowledge that its organization, funding and participants largely come from the German world.

The other “synod” begins on the first Sunday of Advent, that is, December 1. It will take place in Germany and gather the Episcopate of that nation together with some 400 laymen who will review the doctrine and pastoral care of the Church.

Both synods are off to a bad start.

The Amazon Synod’s organizers presented the Instrumentum Laboris (IL), a document severely criticized by cardinals and bishops.  Cardinal Brandmüller went so far as to say that the document is “heretical and apostate” because it reneges the faith in Jesus Christ. For his part, Cardinal Müller, former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was no less harsh.

Other cardinals and bishops, such as Raymond Cardinal Burke, former Prefect of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature, and the Most Rev. Athanasius Schneider, Auxiliary Bishop of Astana, called on the faithful to observe a day of fasting and prayer during the synod to prevent the adoption of IL-proposed measures.

For their part, Synod organizers claim that the IL is a document emanating from the voice of the Amazonian peoples themselves.

To find out what the Amazonian peoples are saying about it, the Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira Institute (IPCO) organized a caravan of 45 volunteers who toured the states of the Amazon basin for 20 days. They collected more than 22,000 signatures asking the Holy Father precisely for the opposite of what the IL claims: genuine Catholic teaching, the right to participate in material progress, and to leave behind the pagan cults of their ancestors. The petition was delivered to the Synod Fathers in Rome last Friday.

On Saturday, October 5, the IPCO held a conference in Rome on the potential dangers posed by this Synod. In attendance were Cardinals Burke and Brandmüller and high-level academic and scientific lecturers.

The two positions could not be more different, but will not be represented at the synod on an equal footing. Almost all those called by Rome to debate the IL are adepts of the so-called “Indigenous Theology” current.

“Indigenous Theology” is nothing but a recycled version of old Liberation Theology and applies the same hermeneutics of class struggle, setting colonizers and evangelizers against Amazonian peoples, whom the IL presents as an ideal model of integral ecological life, which it calls “Good Living.”

According to “Indigenous Theology,” the Indians are not the ones who must convert to the Church, but rather the missionaries must convert to their “wise” system of respect for the environment and to “integral ecology.”  No wonder the IL employs the word “conversion” 34 times, always in this sense.

***

For its part, the controversial group of lay people called Central Committee of German Catholics (ZdK), will review the planned synod process recently approved by the bishops of Germany, but not by the Vatican.

“ZdK leaders have openly insisted on ending priestly celibacy, establishing the ordination of deacons and eventually priestesses, as well as the blessing of same-sex couples in churches. Synod working groups or forums have already begun their work,” the ACI press agency reports.

Despite constant calls by Rome not to hold this “sui generis” Synod, as they themselves call it, the German bishops (with some honorable exceptions) have ignored such calls, preferring to go their own way.

Both synods, on the Amazon and in Germany, can seriously jeopardize the unity of the Church. The Amazon Synod will do so if it incorporates the pre-Christian, pauperist indigenous “revelation” as a model for the whole Church. The German synod will as well if it approves the ordination of women and the blessing of same-sex unions. As already announced, both may put an end to priestly celibacy.

The unity of the Church is based on the Truth of Faith. It is the mandate that Our Lord gave the first Pope, Saint Peter: “Confirm them in the Faith.” Now if the Faith were placed on an equal footing with the indigenous, pagan superstitions, or if sodomite behaviors were accepted, the Faith would no longer be the foundation of unity but be based on the mere authority of the Synod Fathers, and ipso facto cease being Catholic and binding on the faithful.

* * *

These are times of crisis of Faith, which is why we must have recourse to the Virgin of Fatima with special devotion. In her apparitions, while predicting the times we are going through, she assured us of her ultimate triumph: “Finally, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.”

Translated by the staff of Pan-Amazon Synod-Watch.

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