Showing posts with label Church-Tax. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Church-Tax. Show all posts

Friday, October 5, 2012

Loyal German Priest Association Criticizes the German Church-tax Hunt

"It's tasteless to give so much attention to money."

The "Network of Catholics Priests"  has leveled severe criticism on the Church-tax decree of the German Bishops:  There are significant reasons for faithful to withhold from paying Church-tax in its current form.  To be Catholic without Church-tax is possible.

Cologne (  Guido Rodheudt, the speaker for the "Network of Catholic Priests" has leveled a severe criticism in the recent issue of "Christ und Welt" of the Church-tax Decree of the German Bishops and also  a "pastoral encouragement" for the Parish priest.   This also passes the buck, because first it puts the Paster with the mandated document respectively in contact with the person to approach them, and designate this person as excommunicate.

Rodheudt continues: "The Bishops have created a massive conflict of conscience for Pastors, because there are significant reasons for the faithful, to withhold their Church-tax in its present form and to permit their devotion to the Church in another form.  One can be thoroughly Catholic, without paying Church-tax.  Why should a pastor refuse the Sacraments to someone who would prefer to give his money directly to a Cloister, instead of giving it to Diocesan Academies, or questionable youth associations. How can someone make it clear to the people of the Church, that the Bishops are struggling on the one hand to make a special allowance for remarried and divorced, and on the other side to excommunicate faithful Catholics  because of money?"

He also doesn't understand why Rome has (supposedly) validated this way and why the German Bishops' Conference is celebrating this as a victory.  "What should the public perception of the Church be? Two years ago it was the abuse theme, then the "Affaire Williamson", and now it's money --  it's never the Faith.  I strongly reject this method of tax-hunting."  It is tasteless, to give so much attention to money.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

US Catholic Media Distorts German State-tax Situation

Catholic Media at Work
Edit:  While a lot of Americans now understand that the German Church-tax is a system which essentially compels German Catholics to pay their Church tithes from their income tax at 8% thanks to the Catholic media, that's where their understanding pretty much ends.

This coverage in the American Catholic media on the German news is generally unsatisfactory.  Whether James Akin is trying to cover for Cardinal Schonborn, or what not.  In the current furor over the German Church-tax, predictably, Catholic media has sided exclusively with the German Bishops, while ignoring the actual condition of the German Catholic World, which has sunk very low indeed. It's almost as if they don't want American Catholics to draw obvious parallels between the corrupt bureaucracies which dominate both churches.

It's therefore tragic that we have to go to the usually unreliable American secular press to get a clearer picture of what's going on.  This was the case with 'International Business Times', which described the Bishops' Decree as, "Pay up or Die Without Absolution", which is what it is if you bother to read the Decree, which Father Boyle admits he has not.  We were the first, and only American news commenter, to report on this issue and we did so by simply translating the story from the German District of the SSPX, which describing the deplorable situation in very clinical terms indeed.

We also noted that the German Bishops had made no mention of refusing the Sacraments to the numerous dissidents employed in Catholic Counseling Services recommending abortion services, for example, in parishes or on University Faculties simply teaming with non-conformist intellectuals who are capable of doing everything but teaching the Catholic Faith.

To read articles by James Akin or Father John Boyle, you would think that the German Bishops are simply tightening up the reigns and drawing Catholics to greater fidelity.  Actually, most Germans leaving the Church aren't concerned in the slightest about whether or not they are excommunicated, but there are many Catholics who are faithful to the Church's teachings, so faithful in fact, that they have no desire to be a material contributor to Diocesan programs and efforts which they can't in good conscience support.

While Father Boyle does acknowledge that opting out of the Catholic Church as a "body of legal right", can be dealt with as a case by case basis, not all German Bishops are concerned by the moral reservations of many faithful Catholics.

This was the case with a German canonist, Doctor Harmut Zapp who recently won a legal case against the Diocese of Freiburg headed by the head of the German Bishops' Conference Archbishop Zollitsch (One of German's most dissident and disobedient Old Liberal Bishops). The ruling was inaccurately reported by First Things as a victory for the Archdiocese.  This was not the case as the German Court ruled in favor of the good Catholic Doctor Zapp, whom First Things described as a "tax dodger" or a man of low integrity.

While these sorts of inaccuracies aren't necessarily the result of bad will, they are frequent and persistent enough where it becomes easier to accuse those harboring them persistently without recantation or apologies, of being a very bad set of characters indeed.

Let's not assume, as the Catholic media USA does, that the German Bishops aren't the problematic, often encouraging heresy and disobedience to Rome, while continuing projects harmful to their flocks and harboring enemies of the Church at the expense of the laity who support it with their blood, sweat and tears.  Germans work hard, but they also want to see their money spent well.

There was one ray of light, however, on Father Boyle's blog, where a commenter brought up the point we've been trying to make that faithful Catholics shouldn't be forced under threat of excommunication to support anti-Catholic policies and individuals.  As noted above this situation has obvious parallels in how the USCCB has been working with CCHD and CHS to promote programs and individuals not only working contrary to Catholic belief, but often hostile to it.  While our own situation in the USA has improved slightly,  let's hope that with the help of faithful Catholics everywhere, a stop can be put to this horrible misappropriation of spiritual and financial capital.

Photo credit, thanks.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Church-tax: Archdiocese of Freiburg Loses Against Loyal Catholic

Attorneys:  "Just because of an unsuccessful complaint by the Archdiocese of Freiburg there will begin a discussion within the Church now more than ever with a five year postponement."

Freiburg (  Freiburg lawyers of canon lawyer Harmut Zapp have published a press clarification about the judgment of the Federal Court's instruction about leaving the Church,  in which they make it clear that, contrary to some media reports of the Archdiocese of Freiburg with its legal opinions, where Helmut Zapp is explained to have left the "Roman Catholic Church, as a corporate body of public law" has not left the Roman Catholic Church, has lost. recently documented the explanation in text [with our translation]:

The Federal Administrative Court has, with its judgement of 26.09.2012 (-6 C 7.12), has finally rejected the complaint of the Archdiocese of Freiburg against Harmut Zapp declared leaving of the Church to the registry office in July of 2007.  The Archdiocese of Freiburg is thereon completely subject whereupon Hartmut Zapp with his declared exit from the "Roman Catholic Church as a body of public right" does not constitute leaving the Roman Catholic Church.

Much more it was certified that Hartmut Zapp with his declaration is effectively, "without any ifs and buts"  is outside of the Catholic Church.  Hartmut Zapp has indicated with his declaration of exit.  It went to him-- against the media reportage --  that he was  at no point,  throwing aside his duties as a member of the Roman Catholic Church corresponding to its internal norms.

The Federal Administrative Court had further clarified in substantiating its ruling that the consequences of declaring exit of Hartmut Zapp only bears upon the State's area.   Among other things, the state may no longer levy Church-tax on Hartmut Zapp.  That is only the consequence of the declaration of leaving the Church in the secular area among  others, albeit it is also in the public consciousness probably the most important.

Against that there remains according to the Federal Administrative Court finally the question of the Roman Catholic Church itself, as it addresses the exit of Hartmut Zapp within the Church.  The Federal Administrative Court can and may not address the specifications of the basic law on articles creeping over from Weimar's Reich Constitution.  If Hartmut Zapp respective of internal Church norms therefore  is or not a member of the Roman Catholic Church, the Church must itself decide on these norms.  Which importance in connection with the German Bishop Conference's recently published "General Decree on Leaving the Church", remain foreseeably to be clarified by internal Church processes. 

Hartmut Zapp wants exactly these internal Church conflicts already in 2007 to be adjoined with his declaration of leaving the Church.  Just because of the most recent unsuccessful complaint of the Archdiocese of Freiburg, there begins an internal Church discussion now more than ever after a five year postponement.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Old Liberal Gold Instead of Catholic Faith

Matthias Matussek
© Christliches Medienmagazin pro,
Flickr, CC
Perhaps the Pope and Bishops are finally coming to the conclusion that the Church is supported by the people who form it -- the Catholic Faithful.

( "How distrustful must the German Catholic Church be to tie the Sacraments to membership fees?"

This question was put by journalist Matthias Matussek yesterday in the former Nazi-Journaist founded with the help of his SS-Friends Germany Church-hate magazine 'Spiegel".

Matussek commented on the most recent Leipzig Church-tax judgment in which the Bishops most recently lost their senses.

The Journalist prophesied:  "So the Church will sink in on itself:  the old will die, the young will stay away.  The Church will be built voluntarily."

"No Sacraments Without Church-tax"

The last Dogma of the Old Liberal Bishops sounds like this to Matussek:  "No Sacraments without Church-tax."

Or: "Pay first, then to the Communion rail and the Confessional."

Interior Empty

Matussek sees the in the fact of a Church-tax a "hair raising, but for the time being, tolerable alliance  in which all participate."

The Church secures to itself a yearly intake of 4.8 Billion Euro -- and the state collects a two percent fee.

At the same time the German official Church is, according to Matussek, "sturdy on the outside, but empty on the interior."

They keep out of a conflict with the Zeitgeist

The Journalist referred to a new 'Allensbach' study:  Only 47 percent of so-called Catholics in Germany believe in the Holy Trinity.

With this not even one half in this case pray the Creed.

This scandal should, according to Matussek, disquiet the Bishops -- "not the fact that the Zeitgeist takes offense at celibacy."

Actually the German official Church "keeps out of conflict with the Zeitgeist."

A Pitiful Picture

For Matussek the German Bishops offer the explanation that the tax rebellion was a "serious transgression" against the Church Community, a "pathetic picture".

Even the Old Liberal magazine "Christ in der Gegenwart' (Christ Today) takes note that the Bishops are concerned not "for those leaving, but to save their Church finances."

Matussek compared the situation with a "present day scandalous form of indulgence in the word where everything is only for sale."

In the End the Catholics Remain

He knows, that "our Church will soon sink."

Because: "The Old will die, while the young stay away."

Too late will the Church recognize that those who support it are the ones who form it: the Catholic faithful.

Link to

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Church-tax: German Bishops Overstepped their Authority

Bonna locuta est - causa finita non est

Edit: Archbishop Gerhard Mueller just might have stepped too far this time. The media reports are making the German Bishops look terrible, and Canon Lawyer Father Gero Weishaupt, whose work appears here below via, has devised some canonical solutions for committed German Catholics who feel uncomfortable supporting the many Diocesan initiatives which go against Catholic teaching and practice.

Canon Lawyers:  The faithful may file grievances against the Decree of the German Bishops' Conference to the Papal Counsel for Legal Texts --- Document of the DBK is in contradiction to the Vatican's document from 2006.

Rome (  The discouragement of German Catholics about the decree of the German Bishops' Conference has still as big and the debate over it continues -- against some Bishops' wishes.   There is confusion at the present with respect to the question, which Vatican dicastery had  really "blessed" the document. It is also unclear if Pope Benedict XVI had even signed it.

According to the Bishops Conference the document had been recognized by the Bishops' Congregation.  FAZ reports that had there been personal approval by the CDF  under the German Archbishop Gerhard Mueller and Pope Benedict, a suggestion, which in any case is not anywhere in the official documents of the DBK.  At least the general vaidation by the Pope will be questioned by Vatican observers in Rome, in any case called into question, where Benedict XVI has been a significant critic of the German system.

About the competence for such particular laws there is the legally pertinent apostolic constition "Pastor Bonus"  for information.   There it says in article 82:  "The Congregation deals with matters pertaining to the celebration of particular councils as well as the erection of conferences of bishops and the recognitio of their statutes. It receives the acts of these bodies and, in consultation with the dicasteries concerned, it examines the decrees which require the recognitio of the Apostolic See"

How does that apply to the faithful in Germany?  Canon lawyers, who view the conclusions of the DBK critically have given the advice to resist against it.  It is recommended to write a registered letter, sending it to the Nunciature in Germany to the Papal Counsel for the Interpretation of Legal Texts (00120 Citta Del Vaticano, Vatican City).

As an alternative it can be sent directly to (this Counsel), and indeed referring to the Apostolic Constitution "Pastor Bonus" where it reads in article 158, the following: 
 At the request of those interested, this Council determines whether particular laws and general decrees issued by legislators below the level of the supreme authority are in agreement or not with the universal laws of the Church.

As KATH.NET has learned the Papal Counsell for Legal Texts has a great interest in this that the questions will be clarified.  If the Counsel has already has already previously been appraised is unclear at the moment.  Already in its clarification of 2006, 'ACTUS FORMALIS DEFECTIONIS AB ECCLESIA CATHOLICA" it had clearly laid out the following:

"The  apostasy from the Catholic Church must, in order to be validly represented as an actus formalis defectinis ab Ecclesia, also has to be made concrete with respect to the foreseen cited canonical exceptions in: a) an inner conviction, to leave the Catholic Church; b) the following through and outer demonstration of this decision; c) the adoption of a decision against Church authority."

At least point a) is a clear contradiction of the declaration of the German Bishops' Conference.  The reason is simple:  In Germany the number of Catholics is growing, who are no longer prepared, in their consciences, to transfer Church-tax to Diocese, who clearlt agitate against the Catholic Church's teaching g and discipline with this money in either concealed or open projects or groups.  It is  patently clear that at least in this group, none of these Catholics wish to leave the Church, but quite the opposite.

Critics on the document of the Bishops are also coming from the worldly media.  This is what the "Sudddeutsche" in a commentary last Monday:  "The signal from outside is catastrophic however:  It doesn't apply to people who are leaving, it's all abut the church finances.  It is not applied in the first line n people who are going, who apostatize,  the quarrelsome, who have become estranged, for whom the Church stand -- rather it is accounted to secure the institution."

Even Catholic bloggers have shown themselves not afrighted  by the document from Bonn and showed some humor.  The following joke is circulating:  "Hey, did you know who the patron saint of the German Bishops' Conference is?  Naturally, St. Mathew, patron saint of tax collectors ;-)"

Das Vatikanschreiben (Write the Vatican) ACTUS FORMALIS DEFECTIONIS AB ECCLESIA CATHOLICA im Wortlaut 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Will German Bishops Now Demand Pro-Life Ethic from German Politicos?

Edit: now that the German Bishops have assured themselves of a relatively easy income by threatening to effectively excommunicate anyone who doesn't pay the German Church-tax, will they be putting their collective feet down in other areas as well?

How about divorced and remarried, or Catholic politicians who support abortion?

For example, there is the Socialist Vice President Wolfgang Thierse, who had the umbrage to receive Communion in the hand encouraged disobedience to John Paul II's wishes about abortion:

The German newspaper "Frankfurter Allgemeine" and public radio station "WDR" have published extracts of a stern letter in which the Pope orders the German bishops to decree an end to the service of public advisers who help women who want an abortion. "It is right to put an end to complicity in the granting of licenses to kill," Archbishop Johannes Dyba of Fulda said.
The revelations have elicited an immediate reaction from political quarters. Social Democrat Wolfgang Thierse, president of the Bundestag, criticized the Pope's decision and expressed the implicit hope that the bishops will have the courage to disobey.
This is not the first time John Paul II has expressed strong criticism of German legislation on abortion. The interruption of pregnancy is free and unrestricted in Germany during the first three months, but the woman who wants to abort must consult a visit a pregnancy consultation center, that is, a place with social workers, psychologists, doctors and religious experts, where the woman is offered material and social aid to raise and educate the child, should she decide to carry the pregnancy to term
. Link to Zenit article...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Old Liberal German Bishops Threaten "Excommunication" to Those Who Won't Pay

Edit: the Kirchensteuer (Church-tax) issue has been a contentious one in German speaking areas as the Old Liberal Church structure uses it to promote its less-than-Catholic policies.  At this point, the German Bishops are willing to use their flagging spiritual authority to keep the money and their power.  Rome appears to have acquiesced in the worst possible way.  This is a disaster.  Here's the article we've hurriedly translated from the German District of the SSPX's website:

Bonn ( During his Germany Visit in 2011 Pope Benedict called people to attention making an appeal in his so-called Freiburg speech to "worldliness" in the Church. True openness to the world is only made possible by a corresponding release and emancipation from structural coercion. At the same time, Church-steuer (tax) became a topic of discussion in the media. Today (20 Sept) the German Bishops' Conference has published in a press release, which actually goes against the desire of the Pope, to refuse all Sacraments, to those who are indeed Catholic --- but do not want to pay Kirchensteuer (Church tax).

 Already on the 13th of March 2006 the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts had pointed out the glaring conflict in Germany. It was then that Rome recalled that leaving the State designation can not be automatically compared to defection from the Catholic Church. As "withdrawal from State" is handled as a separation from the Church, in so far as in the Bundesrepublik of Germany it is a Body of Public Law and whose members are bound to pay taxes by the state.

 A separation from this Body is, as Rome presently has described it, is not bound by the punishment of excommunication. Therefore a baptized Catholic, who is effectively wishes to separate from the Church as a visible institution, to his current local Bishop or at least to his pastor, that he completely or partially rejects the Faith of the Church or does not want to place himself under the hierarchical order of the Church. That means therefore, that also in Germany the membership in the Church is not identical with membership in the state regulated Body of Public Law. (In the description of the written Papal Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts of the 13th of March 2006; is based on a document to the Society in the Newsletter of March 2012 recommendations to the faithful, who have left the State Body and to announce to the Parish office affiliation.)
Exactly the opposite was announced in the Decree of the German Bishops' Conference on the 20th of September. Though one does not incur automatic excommunication any longer, it probably constitutes a "compromise" with the Roman position, but the leaving the Church in the form of its government situation has the same legal consequences as excommunication. These legal consequences are mentioned decree of the German Bishops' Conference in Point II 1. described:

"The person who has left the Church

- may not receive the Sacraments of Penance, Eucharist, Confirmation and
Last Rites -- except for the danger of death

-  can not be vested in any ecclesiastical offices and may not participate in functions in
the Church,

- can not be a Godfather or a sponsor for Confirmation,

- can not be a member in either parish or Diocesan Councils.

- loses the active and passive right of voting in the Church.

-can not be a member in public Church societies."

In clear English: whoever doesn't pay, doesn't get the Sacraments.

Everyone who leaves the official state body, should receive a document (zum Pastoralen Schreiben der DBK).

That this is effectively the same thing as an excommunication, is shown especially in a further clarification of the decree, which touches on the Church burial of a "person who has left the Church".

This can not only be refused if the person "has shown before her death any sign of remorse." It raises the question of what the sign of repentance of the person is? Has she paid no church tax?

Rome has approved the decree, so this compromise has solely avoided the concept of "excommunication."
This is represents a complete abandonment of the position of the Pontifical Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts of 2006 rand represents no  detachment from worldly constraints and clearer witness to the faith, but has announced the massive incorporation into the state system.

Which position of the Gospel are the German bishops pointing to now? Is it  Mt 10:8 "Freely you have received, freely give"?  Or one could one also but equally recall  Matthew 6:24: "You can not serve God and Mammon"?

One must find one in any case: In the case of counseling pregnant women, Pope John Paul II  demonstrated more backbone, determination and authority to the German bishops,  than the present German Pope Benedict XVI. in the matter of church tax.

"Am Gelde hängt,
zum Gelde drängt
doch alles." (Faust)
Link to German District Site....

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

German SSPX Recommends Not Paying Church-Tax

A large part of the money is used so that 'all of the lay organizations, counsellors and functionaries can be paid, which basically work to destroy the Church' --  leaving is limited to a 'Legal entity according to the law'.

Stuttgart (  The traditional Society of St. Pius X is calling upon "Catholics true to Tradition", not to pay any more Church-tax and to give the money instead to 'those works which are true to Tradition and the Church'.  In the March edition of their "Bulletin" there is a form with which a person can declare their 'Exit from the Church'.

In clairification, it is specified that it is limited to leaving "soley and exclusively the Church as public and legal entity".  The reason they give is the "abuse of Church-tax money", which is used "for the destruction of the Faith of the Church".

A large part of the money is used for that, "to pay each of the lay organizations, counsellors and functionaries who are basically destroying the Church," it says.  The money should be applied instead "to those works which remain true to Tradition and therefore to continuing the building of the Church."

The Society of St. Pius X bases itself in its recommendation to exit on Rome.  In the eight page dossier of the Stuttgart published "Bulletin" appears under the heading "Remain Catholic Without Church-tax" referernces a clarification of the Papal Council for Legal Documents, according to which it clarifies that exit from the Church according to state recognition does not result in excommunication, therefore suffices for being stripped of all rights in the Church.  This 2006 "Clarification" the German Bishops refused to obey.

The President of the German Bishops' Conference, Archbishop Robert Zollitsch, briefly explained that the German Catholic Bishops are in "discussions at this point with Rome".  Zollitsch is confident, "that we we will come to a way of going forward that will be bearable for everyone."

(C) 2012 Catholic News Agency KNA Inc. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Liberals in Chur Switzerland are Screaming like the Possessed

The Archbishop of Chur, Switzerland is being attacked by his Deans. The tax church has been screaming for his dismissal. This looks like a contest of wills with the tax-administrators trying to run the traditional Bishop out of town. They don't like that he's going to be serious about having the Immemorial Mass of All Ages said. They don't like his attitude, but that's about all they can do, because there appears to be no move to get rid of him and no interest in Rome for replacing him either. Actually, when the Cardinal of Vienna does terrible things and his laity cry out to Rome, they don't do anything there either.

There's a petition you can sign, here. There are also two other stories on this blog, here and here.

All Deans are Against the Church Bishop

Swizterland: All fourteen Deans int the Diocese of Church have attacked Bishop Vitus Huonder in a press release yesterday. This is according to 'Radio Vatican'. The Deans have complained that the Bishop -- in sight of unrest in the Diocese -- has canceled the next Meeting of the Priest Council and of the Council of Lay Theologians. The Deacons insist that Msgr Huonder, revoke his order "as soon as possible" and hold these senseless Advisory Boards.

Link to original,

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Small-minded Provincial Catholicism Celebrates its Resurrection

First the old liberal fat cats set an Anti-Catholic revolution loose. Then they complain that they have been lumped in with the revolution.

[, Chur] Bishop Vitus Huonder (68) of Chur has been canonically, practically driven out of half of his diocese by non-designated community consultants.

For the notorious church-hate journalist Michael Meier there is no reason to raise the hue and cry in the Zurich regional paper 'Tagesanzeiger'.

Behind the decision there is a yearlong battle between the Zurich State-Church, which controls the Church-Tax, and the Bishop of Chur.

The battle escalated, as the Church-Tax Board adopted an Anti-Catholic church measure.

There it reads: "No priest can be selected as pastor, the Church Community selects the Deacon, the assistant pastoral leader person with the function to direct the community for a term of three years."

The Bishop Strikes Back

Msgr Huonder has actually replaced these illegal regulations now through a new "Guidelines for Sacristies".

They dismiss -- in agreement with Church law -- lay theologians and community leaders.

Simultaneously the Bishop wants more Parishes bound to their sacristies according to the German Model by 2018.

This direction will supersede proposals by the Bishop and also of the community elected pastors.

Those assigned to the Sacristy as employees and princely rewarded lay theologians will be called in the new concept "Pastoral Assistants".

They will be exclusively named by the Bishop or his successor.

"The popular vote is not required" -- cried Meier.

The Strategy of the Fat Cats

Markus Arnold -- an earlier State-Church fat cat in Zurich -- may whine to the 'Tagesanzeiger' and threatens to take legal steps against the Bishop.

Actually, a Zuricher Judge of the Canton Government waves this aside: "Bishop Huonder does according to canon law probably what, what he wants, even if it goes against Church Order."

In reality the tinkering of the Church Order stands in contradiction to worldwide Church Law.

The Jurist propose that the Zurich State Church might select pastoral assistant persons as community leaders independently of the Bishop and in opposition to Church Law.

Speaker Makes Plain

Bishop Huonder's communication's director, Prelate Christoph Casetti, cited Meier's article in his statement for the 'Tagesanzeiger'.

The Bishop has not allowed for any right of election in his "Guideline for Sacristies": "That happens time and again after votes that developments carry on running" -- avowed the Prelate.

It will come sooner than later to Priest selection, because there is "not a large selection" any longer.

The Parishes would rather select a Pastor, because they must share with other communities.