Some Catholics in the United States are deeply concerned about the German church’s “synodal way.” A quick YouTube search returns titles like, “What is going on in Germany!?!?!” “English Bishop WARNS Vatican ‘Stop German Bishops, We’re Heading to Schism!’” and “Vatican in Crisis Management Mode Over Catholic Bishops in Germany.”
Is any of this true? Not really. For this week’s special episode of America’s “Inside the Vatican” podcast, I spoke with four German Catholics who understand the synodal way well: A bishop involved in the synod’s forum on power, a theologian involved in the forum on women’s roles, one of the synodal way’s spiritual guides, and a critic of the process. The four have different ideas about what the German church needs, but all of them believe that the synodal way is a good-faith effort to ensure the future of the Catholic Church in Germany—and none of them believe there is any risk of schism.
Listen to our special deep-dive episode of “Inside the Vatican” below, and keep reading for answers to some of the most common questions about the German synodal path.
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Colleen Dulle is assistant producer of audio and video at America.
With thanks to America and Colleen Dulle, where this article originally appeared.