The PTH Brixen, located in the Northern Italian region of South Tyrol (Alto Adige), is a significant institution in the traditionally German-speaking region, offering courses in philosophy and theology. It serves as a hub for religious and philosophical discourse and is the academic training center of the Diocese of Bolzano-Bressanone for priests and deacons, pastoral assistants, teachers of religion, and other pastoral vocations.
The decision to veto the appointment is rooted in Lintner’s published works on Catholic sexual morality, which have stirred controversy within Church circles. Lintner’s writings include discussions on the spirituality of marriage, sexual ethics, and the ethics of relationships.
In an article published in 2020 by New Ways Ministry titled “Theologian Suggests Papal Civil Union Support May Lead to Church Blessings,” Lintner is quoted as saying: “A homosexual relationship does not lose its dignity due to the lack of fertility.”
Lintner also contributed a chapter offering “theological-ethical reflections on a blessing ceremony for same-sex couples” to a book titled “The Benediction of Same-Sex Partnerships.”
The statement published by the college on June 27 said that Muser, in concurrence with Lintner, had chosen not to contest the decision. As a result, the college is now tasked with the election of a new dean. Until such time as a new dean can assume office, Muser has affirmed that the incumbent dean, Professor Alexander Notdurfter, will retain his position.
Despite the decision, the priest’s ecclesiastical mandate to teach remains intact, the college’s statement concluded: “The Vatican’s decision is specific to his appointment as dean and does not influence his teaching duties or ecclesiastical authority.”