3. Sep, 2019

Replacing the Sacrifice of the Mass

"Eucharist is not really in demand on the Amazon"


Bishop Reinhold Nann has warned against unrealistic expectations of the Amazon Synod. Compared to the "Tagespost" said the originating from the Archbishopric of Friars clergyman, who heads the Territorialprälatur Caravelí in Peru, in Europe there are exaggerated expectations and fears. However, the Amazon Synod is not a general council. She will only set up the church better for the framework conditions of the Amazon region. Europe would have to make its own European synod for its church reform, because the Amazon Synod is and remains a local synod. However, Bishop Nann acknowledged that the Amazon synod "will have universal significance in terms of climate and environmental protection".

The 59-year-old, who went to Peru as a Fidei-donum priest, knows the challenges in the Amazon from his own experience. His former parish included 37 villages on the Putumayo River. So far, according to Bishop Nann, the Amazonas church has simply been unable to present its hierarchical structure - let alone its sexual morality. "People live their morality, not the church, which has to do with the very large absence of the church in their lives. But that's not a big topic for us. This is all about the environment and the inculturation. "

Repeal of compulsory celibacy does not solve the problems

The idea that the shortage of priests can be easily remedied by the consecration of Viri probati, rejects Bishop Nann. "If I had more priests, they could barely live on the meager incomes of these villages, so I would need part-time priests who still have a civilian vocation or 'viri probati', but they are only married." But men living in sacramental marriage are a rare species in a region where a majority of lay people live together unmarried, and he emphatically dismisses the notion that Catholic believers in the Amazon are tormented by bitter Eucharistic hunger.

Soberly he describes the consequences of the lack of faith: "In the Amazon, the Eucharist, unlike the Andean area, is not really in demand by the inhabitants. A word service is just as much a mass as a mass. Only we theologians think that the Eucharist is the most important thing. "Therefore, well-trained catechists could very well replace the priest. In his opinion, these catechists should also have "a kind of office" that legitimates their service in the eyes of the roommates.

The role of women is also an issue in Perú, the Schoenstatt priest admits. It was thought about a new office for women, a kind of "gynacolytic", which would be equal to the diaconate. This proposal came into play for the first time in July 2018 at the fifth all-American annual meeting of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Bolivia's Santa Cruz de la Sierra.