Catholic Priest: ‘Synodality’ Aims to Destroy the Church by ‘Restructuring’ it into an NGO – Fr. Joachim Heimerl 5/16/24


This essay by Father Joachim Heimerl was originally written in German. It has been translated and published with the permission of Fr. Heimerl.

Someone recently asked me: “Excuse me, Father, what is synodality?”

I admit: I was surprised. After all, we think that nowadays everything revolves around “synodality,” but in fact, the term doesn’t seem to have reached the faithful; it only exists in the bubble of church bureaucrats.

They do not realize that there are more important things than “synodality,” nor that the Church has functioned for 2,000 years without it. Instead, they claim that the Church is “synodal” by its nature; this is so historically and theologically incorrect that you just want to shake your head at it.

But back to the question: “What actually is synodality?”

I would have liked to answer: “Synodality is just nonsense,” and, to be honest, it is; but there is nonsense that is dangerous, and that is the case with “synodality.” That is why “synodality” is not something that can be brushed aside but something that must be understood and, above all, fought against. It is not uncommon for the worst things to arise from nonsense, and even more so when they are labeled with stupid buzzwords. So, is synodality a “stupid” word?

Let me put it this way: it is only “stupid” insofar as it is a foolish neologism that can be filled [with meaning] at will. For this reason alone, it is a political rather than an ecclesiastical term, and this can also be seen from the fact that this term has never existed in ecclesiastical usage: “synodality” does not appear in a single council text; basically, it is pure fantasy, a platitude that can be used to play politics. There is nothing more to it.

The fact that “synodality” somehow sounds like “synod” is just a nice pretense; in this way, a historical continuum is suggested that does not exist at all: “synodality” has absolutely nothing to do with the great synods that existed from antiquity to the Middle Ages, nor, incidentally, with the “synods of bishops” established by Paul VI in 1965.  Since Francis imposed the topic of “synodality” on the current Synod of Bishops, “synodality” has instead become synonymous with “schism.” In short: with the current “Synod on Synodality,” the Church is at a crossroads….

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