Bochum, Germany, Jun 10, 2021 / 07:00 am
Three Catholics have submitted a “dubium” to the Vatican asking if the Church in Germany is in schism.
The trio from the Diocese of Essen formally requested a ruling from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, reported CNA Deutsch, CNA’s German-language news partner.
A dubium, from the Latin word meaning “doubt,” is a question addressed to the Vatican’s doctrinal congregation that can be answered with a “yes” or “no.”
The congregation replies with a “Responsum ad dubium,” as it did in March when asked whether the Church has the authority to bless same-sex couples.
The congregation is sometimes asked to answer multiple queries, known as “dubia.” Four cardinals submitted five dubia in 2016 about the interpretation of Amoris laetitia, Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation on love in the family.
André Wichmann, from Bochum, in western Germany, told CNA Deutsch on June 9 that he and two others had submitted the dubium out of a “great concern about unity.”
“From my point of view, the split has already taken place,” he said, citing demands in Germany for the ordination of women, blessings of same-sex couples in defiance of the Vatican, and lay people preaching at Masses.
“We are three Catholic Christians from the Diocese of Essen. We have also been involved in community life in various ministries for many years,” he said.