Rorate Caeli

Full Statement of the Cardinal of Vienna
Diocesan Leadership Confirms Election Results in Stützenhofen

[For background, see previous post: The crisis of the Church is a crisis of Bishops - The Vienna Chronicles: another priest thrown under the bus. Thanks to our reader-translator, who added his own relevant note in the end.]

Press statement of Archbishop Christoph Cardinal Schönborn on the parish council elections in Stützenhofen.

I thank the many candidates for the parish council elections. By their candidacy they showed their concern for the Church and the Faith. Thus they witness to the vitality of the Church. In their diversity they reflect the diversity of the life and faith journeys of today. Thus there are many parish councilors whose lifestyle  does not in every way conform to the ideals of the Church. In view of the life-witness that each of them gives taken as a whole, and their commitment to the attempt to live a life of faith, the Church rejoices in their efforts. She does not thereby call the validity of her ideals into question.

In the small community of Stützenhofen, which I hold in great esteem, there is lively participation in Church life even in the younger generation. A sign of this is the high turnout the parish council elections. The formal errors which have come to light in that election do not call the results of the election itself (in which the youngest candidate, Florian Stangl, received the most votes) into question.

I was able to have a personal conversation with Herr Stangl, and was deeply impressed by his faithful disposition, his humility, and the way in which he lives his commitment to service. I can therefore understand why the inhabitants of Stützenhofen voted so decidedly for his participation in the parish council.

Today in the bishop’s council [Bischofsrat] we discussed the complex Stützenhofen case, and unanimously decided on the following decisions:

1. The diocesan leadership does not challenge the validity of the election and its results.

2. The bishop’s council mandates a revision of the rules for parish council elections in order to clarify the pre-requisites for candidacy in the context of continuing deliberation about the nature and purpose of parish councils.

Translator's note: candidates for parish councils in the Archdiocese of Vienna can be nominated by any Catholic before the election. The nominations are supposed to enclose a signed statement by the candidates in which they affirm that they fulfill the conditions for the office (including crucially the condition that they adhere to the faith and discipline of the Church - “sich zur Glaubenslehre und Ordnung der Kirche bekennen”). At the election voters mark as many names on the candidate list as there are places to be taken in the council; the candidates with the most votes are elected. In Stützenhofen the candidates neglected to sign statements affirming that they fulfilled the conditions for election. Herr Stangl, the candidate with the most votes, lives in a civil-partnership with his homosexual lover. An initial statement of the Archdiocese said that “in principle” persons who live in such unions are not allowed to serve on parish councils, but that the Archdiocese was examining the particularities of the case in question. In an interview Herr Stangl said “I feel committed to the teachings of the Church. But the demand to live chastely seems kind of unrealistic to me (Forderungen nach Keuschheit zu stellen, ist aber relativ fern von der Lebensrealität). How many people really live chastely?”

As we had said in 2009: "The Cardinal of Vienna: a man who is tough when it counts."


  1. Francis8:41 PM

    Schonborn is no better than Arius, Nestorius, Luther, Calvin, Wesley or any other apostate and heretic in the history of the Church. Yet Schonborn is more dangerous IMO than the other heretics that i've listed because unlike them, Schonborn is still a Cardinal in good standing and is a favorite of the current Pope. Lord help us!

  2. Peterman9:17 PM

    Could someone please explain what the he** a "faith journey" is? Seriously, I hear that term thrown out so often in the NO Church I'd really like to know what it means. Personally I don't think I'm on a "faith journey" nor do I belong to a "faith community". I'm a miserable sinner Catholic trying to get to heaven.

    If ever you want to know about a specific Catholic Church, just check out their website. If it has a "mission statement" which states "faith community" you know it's loaded with Vat3 hoohah.

  3. QHow many people really live chastely?
    Obviously, he doesn't. What a horrible message to be sending to the Church at large by such an esteemed Cardinal (sarcasm intended). And, yet, it is the responsibility of the holy father to set things straight. We wait and wait and wait.

  4. Kevin B.10:27 PM

    But he's in full communion. Nothing to see here folks, move along.

  5. According to Bishop Williamson:

    what if Rome were suddenly to cease requiring acceptance of the Council and the New Mass ? What if Rome were suddenly to say, “Alright. We have thought about it. Come back into the Church as you ask. We will give you freedom to criticize the Council as much as you like, and freedom to celebrate the Tridentine Mass exclusively. But do come in !” It might be a very cunning move on the part of Rome, because how could the Society refuse such an offer without seeming inconsistent and downright ungrateful ? Yet on pain of survival it would have to refuse.

    Even if you do not agree with him, situations like this help to make Bishops Williamson's point of view understandable.

  6. NIANTIC11:09 PM

    Peterman: "faith journey" means waltzing in the sunshine of the bright Springtime which the Church is undergoing since Vll.
    Ladidada. And in Vienna you get your very own balloon too!

  7. Gratias12:02 AM

    Many, many thanks to the translator. Vielen Dank Übersetzer?

  8. Gratias12:10 AM

    If the Cardinal allows Gays to infiltrate the Church one day he may find that there is corruption going on. Then the sodomy may cause scandal. This might weaken the only hope the world has of getting out of its current moral swamp, the Catholic Church and its Pope.

  9. For his open flouting of the law of Christ and the Church, Cardinal Schonborn must at the least be removed from his see. His act an assault on Christ's Body the Church.

  10. Peterman12:42 AM

    Sorry, typo with Vat3..Lord help us, no Vat3 to pick up where 2 left off.

  11. thomas tucker12:42 AM

    Disgusting and cowardly behavior on the part of Schoenborn. He should be stripped of his title of Cardinal at a minimum.
    What does this say to the many people who strive to live according to Church teaching? Doesn't it tell them that they are just a bunch of idiots and suckers, and that following Church teaching doesn't matter and isn't valued?

  12. Lynda1:14 AM

    The Cardinal's callous disregard for the soul of the young man and for others who may be influenced by this farce into engaging in sinful behaviour, and for the scandalised faithful is truly shocking. Do pastoral council members not have to be practising members of the Church?

  13. Brian1:17 AM

    Jordanes551 said...
    For his open flouting of the law of Christ and the Church, Cardinal Schonborn must at the least be removed from his see. His act an assault on Christ's Body the Church.

    Who should remove him? And, if he is not removed (as you say he "must at least be") and his "assault on Christ's Body the Church" is thereby allowed to continue, would that not suggest a grave failure on the part of the one who does take even that minimal obligatory action?

  14. P.K.T.P.1:50 AM

    Thank you, Heresiarch of Vienna, for creating a state of necessity in your Archdiocese in which the S.S.P.X can work licity as well as validly.

    Don't you love these pompous and arrogant non-statements: we do not challenge the validity of the election [which also means that they do not endorse it]. And then there is the reference to the fact that this Parish is very well attended: if it's well attended, anything goes. Oh, these liberals are sooo clever. They're so intellectual. They could almost pass high school.

    The facts are simple enough. Herr Stangl openly admits that he is a sodomite who finds it 'unrealistic' to remain celibate. He qualifies to run for any election in Hell but not in a Catholic parish. Given his disposition, it is scandalous that he is allowed to enter a church. He should be turned away at the door, by a policeman if necessary. It is like saying that, yes, I am a murderer and it is unrealistic to ask me to stop killing people, and I'd like to sit on the Parish Council.

    There are no doubt thousands of sexual inverts who struggle heroically to refuse temptation and follow the teachings of the Church. This signal tells them that they need not bother. Might as well get move in with their lovers and then approach for Holy Communion. Also consider the message this sends Herr Stangl: don't bother fighting your temptations: embrace them. They are beautful. God gave them to you as a gift.

    Count von Schünborn is also the Cardinal of the 'beer garden' Mass, where people listen to cowboy music and wolf down hamburgers and beer, and then consume the Blessed Sacrament between puffs on their cigarettes. Interestingly, he is also the Cardinal of the Medjugorje abomination, which Michael Davies so excellently proved to be a fraud.

    The question is not if the S.S.P.X is Catholic. The question is whether or not it is the entire Church or only part of it. If the Pope wants to exclude the S.S.P.X, let him first depose Cardinals Schonborn and Wuerl and let him exommunicate 'Fr. Raymond Gravel. Excommunication is a medicinal penalty. In these cases, all the other remedies have failed: the sick puppies need to be put down.


  15. P.K.T.P.2:00 AM

    Cardinal von Schönborn has also decided that, since he cannot endorse the election of this invert (and yet will not challenge it either), the magic solution is to change the rules for parish council membership. Brilliant!

    I have a suggestion of my own. From henceforth, only those faithful who are living in sin openly as buggerers will be eligible to sit on parish councils. If you are not living in a registered 'partnership' with someone of the same sex, you may still vote in a parish council election but you will be ineligible to run in an election on said council. We need to 'redress the balance'. In order to make up for the eighteen centuries of exclusion of inverts, we must now exclude all others for an equivalent period.


  16. The answer of course is "no". This man must not be admitted to Holy Communion or allowed to be on the Parish Council. End of story!

  17. apstemp3:01 AM

    "How many people really live chastely?

    Our Lady has the answer to that question:

    "The sins that lead most souls to Hell are the sins of the flesh."

    Our Lady of Fatima, Pray for Us!

  18. Ecclesia Militans4:46 AM


    The Pope, whether he wants to or not, cannot excommunicate the SSPX - the excommunication would be ipso facto invalid because they would be "excommunicated" for keeping the Faith and the Mass, for resisting heterodoxy and heresy, and for refusing to offend God.

    So the Pope actually has only one (licit) choice, the one he had all along - recognize the SSPX, return to Tradition, abolish novelties.

  19. Phil_NL2:00 PM

    Rather than making this into the umpteenth thread about the SSPX or add to the pile of .... directed to Card Schonborn, I think it's high time some-one asks why there are elections for those positions in the first place.

    Even if there would be a spotless management of the diocese, such a procedure is bound to stirr up trouble with depressing frequency. The Church is not a democracy, far better would it be if new members of a parish council were nominated by the remaining members or the priest. (as is the practice in elsewhere)

    Not that this would eleiminate all problems, certainly not in Austria, but it would minimize them, and allow for much easier correction, with less of a PR disaster.

  20. Phil Warner2:12 PM

    ANOTHER SCHONBORN: Pope Benedict appointed Bishop Cupich as bishop of the diocese of Spokane, Washington USA, which has jurisdiction over Jesuit Gonzaga University. After Gonzaga dumped conservative Fr. Robert Spitzer as chancellor, they named a layman chancellor and opened the doors to the LGBT ("Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Trans-gendered") organization, permitting them to hold “dances” using campus facilities, including across the way from the parish/campus church, historic St. Aloysius.

    Schonborn is notorious. Cupich has eluded notoriety. After all the damage unchaste homosexual-priests have done in Spokane with their molestations (include victims who committed suicide), once again, not only homosexual culture but facilitation of its practice is given access and tacit endorsement by the Diocese of Spokane through Gonzaga University.

    What is the point of going to confession at St. Aloysius to repent of homosexual sins, when across the sidewalk in Cataldo Hall (named after the saintly Jesuit missionary to the Red Indians), homosexuals are dancing, hugging, dating and in some cases no doubt setting up plans to meet for private encounters?

    Catholicism is supposed to be a counter-culture, not an accommodation with the world and its vice.

    (None of this, by the way, justifies SSPX Bishop Richard Williamson’s schismatic mentality. Florence during the Renaissance was a sodomite citadel. No counter-church was erected because the Vatican did not take the proper disciplinary action).

  21. J.G. Ratkaj3:18 PM

    Unhappy neoconservative prelates, who represent the fifth column of the conciliar turmoils, like Schoenborn have brought the church to a gaping abyss. He and one of his predecessors the favourite of the liberals and masons, Card. Koenig, have made the Viennes Church to a spiritual desert.

  22. Have you seen the Web-Ulama's post on this? It makes me sick.

  23. Thank you, Shane.

    We are happy he links to us.

    It does not bode well to pretend this is a political issue (why else pretend it is a matter of "left" and "right", and not of wrong and right?), above which the "scholar" stands untouched, as the "Paladin of the Middle Ground". But if some wish to receive a wider audience from us by posting scandalous opinions, we will not oblige.


  24. Bishop Cupich is even more notorious, unfortunately, for other moves he has made, most notably in barring his priests and seminarians from participating in the 40 Days For Life campaign (a move which spurred some protests, and which was only partly retracted), and in refusing to confront hospitals in his diocese which were providing tubal ligations and birth control to their patients, despite being confronted with concrete evidence of the same.

    It is undoubtedly more charitable to assume that Bishop Cupich is merely that breed of bishop who is resolute about being irresolute, terrified of confrontation with the wider secular culture. But it is harder to determine just what to make of Cardinal Schonborn, who is not only too indulgent of dissent, but erratic as well.

  25. Ed Kelley4:57 PM

    Nor did demons crucify him; it is you who have crucified him and crucify him still, when you delight in your vices and sins.
    St. Francis of Assisi, Admonitio 5, 3.
    This man needs to repent, not lead.

  26. Ora et Labora8:23 PM

    I have a list in my mind of clergy that should be EXCOMMUNICATED (I know I'm only a lay person and a sinner and I have no say in the matter, I leave that to the Pope) and I've noticed that Cardinal Schönborn always seems to head that list.

    This man is corrupt and he is helping many souls to end up in hell.

    I pity those Catholics in Austria who are under Cardinal Schönborn spiritual and pastoral care, Schönborn is directly assisting in the DEFORMATION of their souls.

  27. I read that as the result will not be challenged because it was in accordance with the rules. The rules will be revised (that is, challenged) because (my interpretation) the result was not a good one.

    To go further, living chastely may not be realistic. What is realistic, to borrow from another comment long ago here at Rorate, is frequently and sincerely availing yourself of the Sacramental confession and God's grace.

    I hope and pray this is an opportunity for turning toward God's love and grace.

  28. Cardinal Schönborn preached his Chrisam Mass sermon on this affair:


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