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The below is a post that appeared on the blog of Mathias von Gersdorf. I have provided the translation from the Polish website PCh24.pl (Polonia Christiana). (see here)
I am re-publishing this post for two reasons. First it gives a good insight into the damage to the Faith that the notorious Kirchensteuer is exacting. Many German observers are aware of this situation including the hierarchy. Herr von Gersdorf is one of the few who writes about it on a regular basis.
The second reason that I am reproducing this article is for the statistical data points. Please notice that in the 10 year period from 2004 to 2014, the Catholic Church membership dropped by 7.9% while the protestant sects membership dropped by 11.7%.
In percentage terms, this is a whopping 48.10% larger drop for the proddies than for the home team.
The ramifications of this data further supports the HYPOTHESIS that we have defined on this blog, i.e. that the German Bishops’ Conference and its respective heads from Karl Lehmann, Cardinal, Bishop of Mainz (1987-2008) to Robert Zollitsch, Archbishop of Freiburg (18 February 2008-12 March 2014) to Reinhard “Bling” Marx, Cardinal, Archbishop of Munich and Freising (from 12 March 2014 – Present) are cognizant of the fact that their irrational (TRANSRATIONAL) scheme to make the Catholic Church in Germany into a “NGO with a spiritual element”, like the model that the proddies adopted, is the source of the disintegration of not only the Church itself, but more importantly, the loss to the Faithful of the only means of salvation available.
Let that sink in for a minute or two…
And now to the post, which I am reproducing (with my translation) …
FOR THE RECORD
What is more important to the German bishops: full churches or full wallets?
Are the German bishops, for the good of souls willing to give up the church tax? For just this, exhorts Mathias von Gersdorf. He explains concurrently, that those prelates are not afraid of empty churches.
Mathias von Gersdorff draws attention on his blog, to the study of the Evangelical News Agency IDEA on the trends of the faithful of the Catholic Church and Protestant communities. Statistics have been frightening: in the years 2004 – 2014, the Church shrank by 7.9 percent of the faithful, with a drop of 11.7 percent in the Protestant communities. “These figures show clearly: the liberal course is not able to convince people to stay in the Church” – says von Gersdorff.
“It’s actually logical: the reigning liberal course of two German churches are primarily agreeable for the liberally minded people. These people put a strong emphasis on freedom and the availability of many alternatives. The German system of church tax in turn and in principle, targets the wrong audience “- adds the author.
In Germany, both Catholics and Protestants pay the so-called church tax, forcibly collected by the State from all those who belong to the Catholic Church or “church” evangelical. High-ranking members of both faiths admit that this tax has a significant impact on the mass apostasy taking place annually of hundreds of thousands of the faithful.
“A lot of people separate from their church probably not because they became atheists or non-religious people. They do not want to be simply associated with a particular church, to who they make monthly pay. They reject the rigid form of financing. They want to decide for themselves where and when they give money, “- says von Gersdorff. “Without a doubt, there are also many conservative Christians who do not want to pay church tax and leave the Church. Just as liberals want to decide themselves who they financially support “- we read further.
“Conservatives generally presume that the churches must clearly present the conservative profile to stem the tide of apostasy. Indeed, statistical studies from the United States showed that conservative churches (in the sense of moral-theological strictness, plain language, clear criticism of the modern world etc.) are developing better and can strongly bind their communities than the liberal communities. Churches already define in advance – perhaps unconsciously – want kind of members they want to attract, and which ones they don’t. They cannot or do not want to focus on all “- says von Gersdorff. The author indicates that this situation is very much in effect in the American Catholic Church, where, as in Poland, there is a voluntary funding model.
“At the height of the Catholic crisis, Catholic faithful of the United States donated $ 300 billion to church institutions. This system, based on voluntary funding leads to the fact that next to a very liberal parishes, there are parishes that are very conservative. Speaking purely economically, it makes sense: With this freedom in the United States, the number of people who call themselves Catholic has increased (no matter whether liberal, conservative, traditionalist or even other things) “- explains von Gersdorff.
If Germany wanted to maximize the number of remaining faithful in the Church, the episcopate should choose a model of voluntary funding, according to Gersdorf. However, the influential German bishops thickness of your wallet is more important than whether the faithful leave the Church or come to it. “It is unlikely that Cardinal Marx and the German corporation will change the funding model. The abolition of church tax would lead initially to a reduction in their financial strength “- he explains.