Structural reform and god question belong together

Structural reform and god question belong together

According to theologian Magnus Striet, the Catholic Church must face the question of freedom and self-determination. "Longing for freedom and faith in God cannot be played off against each other," concludes Striet.

However, he said, the church still has "considerable difficulties in finding an appropriate relationship to the modern age of freedom. It constructs its identity through a tradition that it calls eternal and traces back to God Himself in the disputed points," writes the theologian in a guest article on on Wednesday.

At the moment, some are arguing for structural reforms in the church, while others are saying that Germany is facing a crisis of faith, says Striet. Those who call for structural reforms "quickly run the risk of being portrayed as theologically superficial". Questions of gender justice or questions of sexual orientation, however, are not purely structural ies, "but reach into the center of the faith in God".

Structural reform and the question of God

In this respect, a separation between structural reforms and the question of God "simply misses the point," the scientist warns: The question of God "cannot be posed without the question of man.". Conversely, the question of God "must not remain without consequences for the structure of the church".

The church must take a stand on the question of "whether freedom – thought of as the right of self-determination – should be or not," Striet explains. In those regions of the world where "the idea of self-determination has become the normative yardstick – and: where there is a prevailing awareness that organizational contexts did not fall from the sky, it will remain uneasy if conditions are experienced as repressive and insufficient."

In this respect, there is a need to address the question of "how the God who is to become visible from the church thinks about freedom and dignity". Otherwise, the church is threatened with socio-political sideline, the theologian said. "But a positive decision then also has internal church consequences. And these must be pulled, if one does not want to become untrustworthy again."

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