Nearly Half of German Priests Don’t Pray or Go to Confession

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by Rodney Pelletier  •  •  April 21, 2015   

A shocking new study shows nearly half of the priests in Germany don’t pray daily or go to confession

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A shocking new study shows nearly half of the priests in Germany don’t pray daily or go to confession.

The study, authorized by the Catholic Bishops Conference of Germany, was conducted between 2012 and 2014, questioning nearly 8,600 individuals, over half of whom were priests.

The results, illustrated in no. 20 on the document, show 58% of priests and 66% of deacons pray at least once daily. That means 42% of German priests don’t pray. The numbers for confession are worse, with only 54% of priests going to confession yearly or less, and 70% for deacons.

These numbers are shocking considering the head of the German Bishops Conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx, claimed in an interview that the Catholic Church looks to and expects much from the Church in Germany.


Cardinal Reinhard Marx


The numbers only take into account personal prayer, not Mass or the recitation of the Divine Office.

He and other German bishops have been among the most vocal, calling for a change in Church teaching regarding the indissolubility of the sacrament of marriage and the allowance of homosexual unions.

Speaking of the upcoming Synod on the Family in October, Cardinal Marx declared at a press conference, “We are not a subsidiary of Rome. The Synod cannot prescribe in detail what we should do in Germany. Each Episcopal Conference is responsible for the pastoral care in their culture, and has to proclaim the Gospel as their very own office. . . . We cannot wait until a synod states something, as we have here to undertake in this place marriage and family ministry.”


Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller


Cardinal Müller, a fellow German and head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has been vocal about the disturbing moves recently made in the German Church to allow so-called same-sex marriage and Holy Communion to the divorced and civilly remarried.


Another German, Cardinal Paul Josef Cordes, criticized Cardinal Marx’s comments, noting that nobody is looking to the German Church for leadership since Germany has barely any supernatural faith anymore. But he’s being ignored by his brother German bishops who claim “a prefect is not a pope.”


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