Now four German dioceses approve limited intercommunion with Protestants

In Germany, Bishops Gerhard Feige of Magdeburg, Archbishop Stefan Hesse of Hamburg, and Bishop Franz-Josef Bode of Osnabrück have joined Archbishop Becker in implementing in their dioceses the contested orientation handout which permits non-Catholic spouses of Catholics to receive Communion in individual caases, reports.



  1. Back in 2000, the Italian Bishops’ Conference issued, with the Waldensian Church and later joined by the Methodists, pastoral guidelines for interchurch marriages.
    They wrestled with the communion issue and went this far: “On the one hand, the Catholic church believes that total ecclesial communion and its visible sign are essential for the mutual sharing of Holy Communion. On the other hand, it is baptism which “establishes the holy bond of unity….and reaches out to the fulness of life in Christ”; for this reason, the Catholic church “recognizes that in some exceptional circumstances, and in precise conditions, Christians of other ecclesial communities can be admitted to, or even recommended to partake in this sacrament (the eucharist). [quoting the Directory of 1993]
    Members of the Catholic church may not share in the Lord’s Supper in a Protestant church, there being no mutual recognition of the ordained ministry.
    . . . . .
    “In this context of consonance and differences, the interchurch couples (families) seek to live, with the aid of the Holy Spirit and the strength of the Word, as an undivided “household church.”

  2. It seems to me that the Waldensians or some of them did not approve of intercommunion with the Catholic Church because She was still holding doctrines not acceptable to the reformers.

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