Munich, Germany, Feb 11, 2020 / 11:36 am
Cardinal Reinhard Marx has notified German bishops that he will not stand to be elected to a second term as head of the German bishops' conference.
Marx, who is 66 and the Archbishop of Munich-Freising, one of Germany's largest local churches, cited his age and his desire to spend more time in his archdiocese as the reasons.
The cardinal was elected to lead the German bishops in 2014. If he had been elected to second term, the cardinal would have been 72 at the conclusion of his service to the bishops' conference.
The Church in Germany, which is largely funded through a tax collected by the German government, coordinates a considerable amount of its activity through the bishops' conference. The head of the bishops' conference is usually regarded as the de facto leader of the Church in the country, and Marx has taken an active role as a liaison between German bishops and the Vatican.