Cardinal [Caffarra]: Pope’s letter is the reason for division among bishops

Cardinal [Caffarra]: Pope’s letter is the reason for division among bishops

[Hat-tip to Canon212: “Cd. Cafarra: Our dubia aren’t what’s dividing the Church. Francis’ Amoris Laetitia is!”]

Google translation of

Rome ( 16 January 2017

Cardinal Carlo Caffarra has defended his call to Pope Francis to clear certain positions on the ehemale. The “splitting among the bishops” was not the result of the letter of Caffarra and three other cardinals to the pope, but the reason, said the archbishop of Bologna of the newspaper “Il Foglio” on the weekend. “Only a blind man can deny that the church is in great confusion,” Caffarra said literally.

The Cardinal turned against a facilitated admission of remarried divorced persons to the communion, even though this was so taught by some bishops. If people could receive sacraments in a church-law-illegal relationship without first engaging in sexual abstinence, “we must also teach that adultery is not bad in itself.” This is “a simple question of logic”.


Caffarra, former professor of moral theology, and head of the Pontifical Institute for Marriage and Family Affairs from 1981 to 1995, together with the German cardinals Walter Brandmüller and Joachim Meisner, and the American Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke from the Pope, had clarified certain statements in his letter “Amoris laetitia” for dealing with remarried divorced people. The letter was published in November and has been a source of discussion since then.

“Heavy duty to advise the Pope”

Caffarra told the Foglio that the Cardinals were “the duty to advise the Pope on the guidance of the Church.” A church that paid little attention to one’s own doctrine was “not a pastoral, but a more ignorant, church.” This would be the “pastoral practice based on the good cause,” according to the Cardinal.

In the center of the debate on the situation of newly married divorced persons in the Catholic Church is the footnote 351 in the pope “Amoris laetitia”, which some interpreters see as opening. Caffarra called the passage “ambiguous”. It is necessary to examine whether the statement in question “contradicts the previous doctrine of the Popes on this question or not”.

According to his own opinion, pastoral help can only be to lead those concerned to the realization that “they are in a situation in which they can not receive the Eucharist.” On a possible conscience decision, Caffarra said that if a person were to follow their conscience without asking the search for the “truth of the good”, he would give it “the most destructive weapon of their humanity.”

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