Many Catholic Church teachings on sexual morality are either unknown to the German faithful, or rejected as unrealistic and heartless, the country's bishops said in a worldwide Vatican survey, reports the ABC.
They said the survey, drawn up for a synod on possible reforms in October, showed most German Catholics disputed Church bans on birth control and premarital or gay sex and criticised rules barring the divorced from remarriage in church.
The results will not be news to many Catholics, especially in affluent Western countries, but the blunt official admission of this wide gap between policy and practice is uncommon and bound to raise pressure on Pope Francis to introduce reforms.
Bishops in Germany, one of the richest and most influential national churches in the 1.2-billion-strong Catholic world, have been pressing the Vatican to reform, especially in relation to divorce.
A statement from the German bishops conference called the results 'a sober inventory of what German Catholics appreciate about Church teaching on marriage and the family and what they find off-putting or unacceptable, either mostly or completely'.
FULL STORY German Catholics reject sex rules, bishops tell Vatican (ABC)