Cardinal Kasper Clarifies Issues on the Divorced-and-Remarried
"There Is Not, in Fact, an Easy Solution"
ROME, NOV. 29, 2005 (Zenit) - Cardinal Walter Kasper on Friday publicly clarified issues concerning divorced persons who have remarried.
In a commentary published in the Catholic newspaper Avvenire, the president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity responded to erroneous statements attributed to him in recent days in the press. Here is a translation of Cardinal Kasper's full text.
* * *
On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the conciliar declaration "Nostra Aetate," a conference was held in the "Foreign Press" Room on the present state of ecumenical relations and of religious relations with Judaism. My opening address, as well as the subsequent debate (with the exception of only one intervention), was centered on the mentioned topic. However, whoever paged through the Italian newspapers of the following day (except Avvenire, which reported correctly), did not find one single word on the topic of the press conference, but rather a detailed report on the topic of divorced persons who have remarried.
My surprise, as that of many readers, was great. In fact, several articles suggested not only that I had supported the admission of divorced persons to Communion, but considered it possible that the Pope would make a change to the proposition of the Synod of Bishops on the subject. Meanwhile, the dust raised also spread to the foreign press, which in the beginning had referred correctly to what occurred.
The Foreign Press was also surprised by it, and proceeded to transcribe the recording of the discussion. From the latter derives what follows. During the exchange of questions and answers, only one question was asked on the topic of divorced persons who have remarried, and it was not followed up, as it was considered not pertinent to the topic [being discussed]. I restricted myself to speak on the following points: 1) I am not a prophet and I do not know how the Holy Father will use the proposition of the Synod of Bishops; 2) it is a serious pastoral problem, as any one who has experience in the area of the care of souls well knows; 3) a general admission to Communion is not possible, but there are individual cases on which it is appropriate to reflect further. In regard to the last affirmation, I referred expressly to what the Holy Father said to a group of priests in Val d'Aosta last summer [cf. ZENIT, Aug. 16]. I added, in any case, that it had no solution.
There is not, in fact, an easy solution. Every Catholic theologian well knows that the answer might be found only on the basis of the teachings of Jesus and the doctrine of the Church in regard to the indissolubility of marriage. If we want to remain faithful to Jesus' words, we can only say that, when a marriage has been contracted with sacramental value, while the spouse lives there cannot be a second sacramental marriage recognized by the Church. The civil marriage of a divorced person is, objectively, in contradiction with Jesus' teachings.
In certain circumstances, the ecclesiastical tribunals can be of help declaring the first marriage invalid. There are, however, complex cases from the pastoral point of view, for example, when the first marriage, despite its validity, was entered into in a superficial way and, in the end, fails, while the second is lived in a consciously Christian manner and is happy and harmonious. In such situations, certainly impossible in themselves, some Greek Fathers of the Church have recommended the exercise of indulgence. In 1972, the then professor Joseph Ratzinger interpreted such affirmations by way of example. The Council of Trent kept to the most rigid Latin tradition, but without rejecting outright the more mild response of the Greek Orthodox Church.
The experts are not in agreement on the consequences that must be drawn from these and other points of view. It is true that one must not move away arbitrarily from the ecclesial discipline, but [the experts] make possible a serious theological reflection. This reflection has nothing to do with the sensational newspaper headlines, which only create confusion and arouse false expectations which then end in disappointment. Precisely in the situation in which we find ourselves, the Church would not serve any one if it moved away from Jesus' clear teaching.
http://www.catholic.org CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000
Marriage, Family, Divorce, Kasper
More Catholic PRWire
Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718
A Recession Antidote
Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell
Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell
Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Franchising to Evangelize
Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Three words to a deeper faith
Relections for Lent 2009
Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell
World Food Program Director on Lent
Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Glimpse of Me
The 3 stages of life
Sex and the Married Woman
A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Modernity & Morality
Just a Minute
Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Edging God Out
Burying a St. Joseph Statue
George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell
Easter... A Way of Life
Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
by Catholic Online
- Daily Readings for Monday, April 24, 2017
- Why are Christians the most targeted in religious persecution?
- St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen: Saint of the Day for Monday, April 24, 2017
- A resurrected vision for our suffering sick world
- France is choosing between a nationalist and a globalist, sound familiar?
- Day 3 - Novena for Workers, the Unemployed and Underemployed HD Video
- Day 2 - Novena for Workers, the Unemployed and Underemployed HD Video
- Day 1 - Novena for Workers, the Unemployed and Underemployed HD
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, April 25th, 2017 HD
- Daily Reading for Monday, April 24th, 2017 HD
- Intro to the Novena for Workers, the Unemployed and Underemployed HD
Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.