Clarifications regarding the suspension of the beatification cause of Fr. Kentenich

Fr. Eduardo Aguirre
Postulator of the Cause of Canonization of Fr. Joseph Kentenich

Three weeks have already passed since the Bishop of Trier (the diocese in which Schoenstatt is located), Bishop Stephan Ackermann, issued a statement in which he informs that he is suspending the diocesan process of beatification of Fr. Kentenich. 

Since May 3, the day of the communiqué, clarifications about its meaning and consequences for the cause of our Father and founder have been made by the General Presidium of Schoenstatt, by the National Directors of the Family in different countries, and also by me, as Postulator.

Nevertheless, and in view of the questions that continue to be raised, it seems good and necessary to point out and make a brief summary of the practical consequences of Bishop Ackermann’s decision. In this decision, Rome (the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints) has neither intervened nor had any influence. Fr. Kentenich’s cause is only in the diocesan phase.

I take it for granted that both the Bishop’s communiqué and the statements of the General Presidium of Schoenstatt are known. 

The suspension of the beatification process of Fr. Kentenich does not mean that the cause is closed and concluded. The cause remains in suspense, in a state of “rest,” in the sense that Bishop Ackermann will not continue to take initiatives, nor will he continue financing from Trier to promote it. “Suspension” in this context means that the Bishop, and those acting responsibly on his behalf, do not actively continue the process at this time.

What he expects, and invites, is that a thorough, objective and transparent investigation will continue to clarify the recently published accusations against Fr. Kentenich (which were already known in the beatification process).

Bishop Ackermann has made it clear that, if new knowledge becomes available that satisfactorily answers all open questions, it would be possible to resume the process.

Therefore, on the part of the Schoenstatt Family, we can continue to spread the fame of Fr. Kentenich’s holiness, as we have done up to now, with normality and prudence, respecting the guidelines of the Church in this regard; that is, without advancing the judgment of the Church about the holiness of Fr. Kentenich and not exaggerating in the forms of devotion.

I continue to be Postulator with all the responsibilities and functions that are incumbent upon me as such. Fr. Kentenich’s Secretariats can continue to act and spread prayers, novenas, publications and have initiatives to make Fr. Kentenich known and to pray for his beatification. The same applies to the currents of life and forms that arise in the Schoenstatt Family to cultivate the attachment to the Founder.

A very important and very positive consequence of the present situation is that serious efforts are being made, at different levels and in different teams, to investigate Fr. Kentenich’s work in depth and to elaborate in depth this stage of Schoenstatt’s history.

The most important thing in the face of the challenges we face as a Family when confronted with questions about Fr. Kentenich, is to commit ourselves to understand the reasons for his actions more deeply, to assimilate his charism and his mission, and to gain more conviction and clarity in making known and spreading his prophetic contribution for our times.

With a providentialist look, we can perceive the intervention of God and the Blessed Mother in all this. Therefore, it becomes more valuable and important to offer our prayers and contributions to the capital of grace, so that our Mother and Queen may manifest herself victoriously in the cause of our Father and Founder.  MPHC et V!

P. Eduardo Aguirre

Postulator – Rome 26.05.22