'Bishop Ackermann, You Have Fled at the Howling of the Wolves!"
Due to the ouster of their pastor Christoph Eckert Beckinger faithful are demonstrating at Trier chancellory. Speaker says: Ackermann punished "our pastor because of his clear preaching and his loyalty to the Roman Church".
Trier (kath.net) With flaming protest, believers turned from their parish church in Beckinger to their Bishop Stefan Ackermann. At a rally they made the special trip to Trier. This followed the dismissal of the Beckinger pastor, Christoph Eckert. The altercation between the faithful and Bishop Ackermann has now drawn national attention to himself
kath.net documented the written text of a speech to the Episcopal Seat in Trier on Saturday, 11.22.2014, presented by Beckinger Catholics, in full:
Dear parishioners friends, dear children and young people, I can't wish you a "good morning" now. Because this is not a good morning. It is a day that has passed in our episcopal city of Trier in a way we would have thought until now.
Today we do not come as a pilgrims. We come as a flock of sheep troubled that our shepherd was taken away from us without need.
We spent years on the right track with our pastor. He gave us the beauty of the Catholic faith, not only showing it but he planted it with the heart and soul of the Good Shepherd in our hearts and lived with us. He was not a cold pastoral functionary. He lived as a priest of Jesus Christ with us. He has directed our parishes with verve and vigor!
He has worked the mind of the Church and the Church what his job is. We, who were entrusted to him, he has always brought confidence in this church. Especially the many children and young people who have come to know the Church through his work as pastor in a time of uncertainty, as a home in faith and life.
In August of this year, our pastor altar showed the young Christians of our parish at the altar boy pilgrimage to Rome, the foundation of the Church: Peter, the rock on which the Church is founded. The rock that will guarantee the unity of the Church with the bishops.
Now we have to see that it is precisely our bishop, who has badly shaken our confidence in this Church.
He of all people, who should be in the faith, the guarantee of unity for us, has punished our pastor, because of his clear and unequivocal proclamation, his fidelity to the Roman Church and to its tradition, with a dismissal.
He introduces himself, after a few complainants from our ranks who were chafed by the Catholic orientation of pastoral care in our parish community and those of the pastor who is a thorn in their sides because of his loyalty to the Church.
These are not representative of the believers in Beckingen! We have pointed out time and again in letters to the bishop and in public statements. You have not been listening to us!
THEREFORE, Your Excellency Dr. Stefan Ackermann, we stand here in front of your headquarters today. We hope that you will hear us today and understand!
We are stunned by your way of dealing with us. We are not being treated sheep who one should lead good pasture. We are treated like sheep being punished because their shepherd has led them to good pastures.
You disregard our dignity as responsible Catholics. You rule over us with the caprice of a medieval lord. You abuse your authority and destroy an aspiring parish community! Just because there is not based on the zeitgeist, but in Catholic tradition.
We ask you about today, Lord Bishop:
What example do you give in our times by such behavior? What harm is done to the hearts of people, especially young people?
On May you have asked the believers in a sermon in our cathedral to be good custodians. You have called to the fact that we allow the building of God's living temple. This is the same situation with our parish community, and you have thrown the wrecking ball through the temple of God.
Why do you refuse to dialogue with us?
We are stunned by the way in which you engage your episcopal authority against us. We are deeply shocked by your ignorance to the voice of the faithful!
Immediately in the wake of the Synod, we have experienced everything that has been said by you in the last few years on the maturity of the laity and our participation in God's kingdom, as empty words! You have not heard the voice of the faithful! You have fled at the howling of wolves!
"The Bishop should involve the people of God in the joint search of what the spirit of God in the present moment in the local Church," so you said at the opening of the Synod.
We feel in Beckingen that this claim is downright cynical in the face of totalitarian conduct with which the priest and the parish were silenced!
Lord Bishop Ackermann, you have explained in a public letter the last Saturday that you understand our feelings well. If this should not be remembered as pure hypocrisy in the history of this diocese, then turn to your heart to the truth! This is the cause of the loss of unity in our communities!
And now you call on us by the unfounded dismissal of our respectable pastor to pray for unity?
Pope Francis has spread the slogan on Twitter a few weeks ago: "The division within a Christian community is a grave sin; it is a work of the devil."
Our voices will not be silenced!
But Lord Bishop Ackermann, if you will not at least listen to what we ask today, the sheep, at least listen to the Pope.
- Make the wrongs good!
- Take active concern and work for unity in our parish.
- Understand the concerns and needs of your fellow Christians.
- Leave your walls, as Pope Francis has called for you to do, and go to the people.
- Solve problems on the ground and away from your desk. Show that you have understood the message of Pope Francis and
-. Show that you are serious about the Synod in Trier.
Photo Bishop Ackermann (c) the diocese of Trier