Amoris Laetitia Paragraph 3 Must-Read

Amoris Laetitia Paragraph 3 Must-Read (Part 1)

[A new version of “cuius regio, eius religio”? – A Latin phrase which literally means “whose region, his religion”, meaning that the religion of the ruler of a region was to dictate the religion of that region. At the Peace of Augsburg of 1555, which ended a period of armed conflict between Roman Catholic and Protestant forces within the Holy Roman Empire, the rulers of the German-speaking states and Charles V, the Emperor, agreed to accept this principle – Wikipedia. Thus, the bishop(s) of a region or a diocese determine whether or not adulterers and other public sinners may receive Holy Communion – for example, in countries such as Germany the bishops would say “Yes,” while in Poland they would say “No”; or in dioceses such as Chicago where Abp. Cupich has no problems with couples in adulterous or sodomite unions receiving Holy Communion as long as they do such in “good conscience”]

Posted by St. Corbinian’s Bear at

Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia is far too long to treat thoroughly in one article. For a summary, see the Bear’s earlier recent article [see comment below], which is a summary of the official Vatican summary. “Part 1” means the Bear’s Part 1 of how many he knows not. This article will treat the beginning, and one remarkable paragraph.

Very early (in paragraph 3) we find a remarkable statement.

3. Since “time is greater than space”, I would make it clear that not all discussions of doctrinal, moral or pastoral issues need to be settled by interventions of the magisterium. Unity of teaching and practice is certainly necessary in the Church, but this does not preclude various ways of interpreting some aspects of that teaching or drawing certain consequences from it. This will always be the case as the Spirit guides us towards the entire truth (cf. Jn 16:13), until he leads us fully into the mystery of Christ and enables us to see all things as he does. Each country or region, moreover, can seek solutions better suited to its culture and sensitive to its traditions and local needs. For “cultures are in fact quite diverse and every general principle… needs to be inculturated, if it is to be respected and applied.”

It is essential to really digest this short paragraph in order to understand the worldwide shell game that’s being played by your Pope. If you read it again, the Bear will wait. (Hums the Jeopardy music to himself.)

Pope Francis has given a gift that will keep on giving long after he has departed the scene. He seems — to the Bear, who does, after all, know something about forest fires — to have set out cans of gasoline and matches and given a wink to any arsonists on the scene. This way he changes nothing, nor does he dirty his hands. We’ve seen this transparent act throughout his whole, sorry dog-whistle pontificate.

His special brand of Pneumatic Catholicism seems to envision a decentralized Church (at least with regard to doctrine and morals stemming from the sacrament of Holy Matrimony, and necessarily impacting the doctrine of The Precious Body and Blood of Our Lord) that is operated by the direct influence of the Holy Spirit on countless individuals, rather than hierarchically.

It’s also a big, wet, kiss to the German bishops.

Not bad for paragraph 3 of 300.

Maybe decisions will be limited to official pronouncements by national conferences. But what is a “region?” Big, like a collection of nations? Or small, like one diocese? In any case, one does not get the impression that FrancisMercy is meant to be tied up in a bunch of red tape. Priests will be the ones that will be dealing with these issues. The Bear envisions a parish-by-parish patchwork of No-Communion and Communion Zones for “divorced and remarried Catholics.”

Not to beat a dead horse, but the Bear notes that these issues Pope Francis has just tossed to the crowd like parade candy are not exactly trivial. He makes the point that, “Unity of teaching and practice is certainly necessary in the Church, BUT…” FrancisMercy trumps everything.

And with all his speaking, and all his writing, he has never once bothered to explain exactly how FrancisMercy is supposed to work. Has the Holy Spirit ever acted in the Church in such a sloppy and eccentric manner, without careful thought and explanations?


The Bear could sure use a fish after a full day with his sensitive black nose buried in this wretched mess so he can bring the best (or worst) of it to his friends.

To everyone who has already sent fish, whether it’s a single salmon, a refrigerator full, or a fish-of-the-month club, it all sustains and encourages the Bear in his solitary pursuit of truth. And entertainment. The Bear hopes he has caught up on his thank-yous. He did his best, so if you didn’t get one, it was entirely the fault of… somebody else. (Bears are terrible liars.)

If you don’t know what the Bear is talking about, see the side-bar to the right.

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One comment on “Amoris Laetitia Paragraph 3 Must-Read

  1. The Apostolic Exhortation

    Posted by St. Corbinian’s Bear at

    Mercy versus Rules

    The Bear is first reading the summary at the Vatican radio website, and writing. That alone has taken a full day, but the Bear’s diligence knows no limits for his faithful readership.

    It’s bad.

    The Bear promises he will read the whole thing and report. But, based on the summary, here, it looks like Pope Francis is creating a tension between Mercy versus Rules, with a clear preference for the former, while not touching the authority of the latter. Those are now an ideal, which is something quite different than a teaching or sin.

    In other words, Pope Francis is having his irregular wedding cake and eating it, too. The practice and morals of the Church are subject to (instead of “change,” we’ll call them “merciful pastoral adjustments”) on a case-by-case basis. The teachings are not changed (ostensibly) — that would be heresy — but Catholics in “irregular unions” are, if they can find a sympathetic priest, free to disregard them. Perhaps the Church’s actual teaching on marriage will remain, but as an unachievable ideal. Over time, the Church’s teaching on marriage will fall victim to desuetudo.

    Keep in mind on this issue we have no less an authority than Jesus Christ Himself. That is Who Pope Francis is clubbing with his Mercy Stick. It is appalling. This is the time of the bishops, priests, and laity to say, “No, we do not accept this.”

    Unfortunately, the reality will be that your chances of “Mercy” will vary from diocese to diocese. Which, frankly, sounds crazy. This will set bishop against bishop. And the divorced and remarried, and homosexual partners will be clamoring for their “merciful pastoral discernment.”

    The idea of total, unconditional Mercy is wonderful. Unfortunately, Pope Francis has not shown the intellect to happily integrate it into the life of the Church. He sows confusion on a point essential to salvation! It comes across as cheap grace. It doesn’t even sound Catholic. Mercy is an exchange between a soul and God, and presents a new chance to amend your life. Pope Francis’ concept of Mercy sounds more Protestant than Catholic. You’re saved! Snow on a dungheap!

    The man conceals his goals in a dozen tropes that he constantly repeats. The Bear doesn’t know what our Pope believes.

    But Pope Francis is clever, sort of, but not really as sneaky as he thinks he is.

    In Cauda Venenum

    A Bear trick is to read things like this from back to front so he knows where the author is really going. Try it sometime. Remember: in cauda venenum. We see the return of the Holy Polyhedron, a bit of Pythagorean mysticism worthy of our recent discussions of Hermeticism.

    We also revisit “the field hospital.” Speaking of “controversial issues,” Pope Francis has this curious remark. “The Church does not disregard the constructive elements in those situations which do not yet or no longer correspond to her teaching on marriage.” [!]

    Continuing through the summary of Chapter Eight, Pope Francis speaks of “unmerited, unconditional, gratuitous mercy,” and “pastoral discernment,” in the context of “the divorced who have entered a new union, for example, can find themselves in a variety of situations, which should not be pigeonholed, or fit into overly rigid classifications, leaving no room for a suitable pastoral and personal solutions.” [?]

    The whole topic of what to do with persons in “irregular unions,” is so multi-faceted (much like the Holy Polyhedron) that the Pope cannot provide any rules. These matters must be resolved by “pastoral and personal discernment,” on the basis of individual challenges. Not to forget “accompaniment,” “dialogue,” and “walking.” So have at it, priests and prelates! I’ve given you a vague, nice-sounding document to guide you.

    Pope Francis places (unconditional) “Mercy” on one side and “Rules” on the other. This tension is really the whole setup for Amoris Laetitia “We put so many conditions on mercy that we empty it of its concrete meaning and real significance. That is the worst way of watering down the Gospel.” The Bear would counter that ignoring the explicit “rule” spoken of by Christ is a “worse way of watering down the gospel.”

    There is a fig leaf, however. “To show understanding in the face of exceptional situations never implies dimming the light of the fuller ideal, or proposing less than what Jesus offers to the human being.” [?] Yep. The rules are an ideal, which is very different from a rule or a sin.

    Responsible Parents Condemned

    Pope Francis had this to say about parents who want to know where their children are at all times. “If parents are always obsessed where their children are and controlling all their movements, they will seek only to dominate space. But this is no way to educate, strengthen, and prepare their children to face challenges.”

    Helicopter moms shot down by Pope.

    Actually the Bear is reminded of ancient Sparta, which also incorporated free range children.

    There is much more talking about the family, and marriage, in general that the Bear will get around to later. But for now, Pope Francis did not give the green light to communion by divorced and remarried, or homosexual partners. But it seems to the Bear that he is inviting bishops and priests to do what he dares not.

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