Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith sees no need to correct Pope on Amoris Latetitia
There is no need for the cardinals of the Church to correct Pope Francis on Amoris Laetitia, says the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Cardinal Muller has said there is no need to issue a correction to Amoris Laetitia.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) -- Cardinal Gerhard Muller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has said there is no need for the cardinals of the Church to correct Pope Francis on his letter, Amois Laetitia.
The papal document asks clergy "to discern the situation of these persons living in an irregular union --that is, not in accordance with the doctrine of the church on marriage --and asks for help for these people to find a path for a new integration into the church according to the condition of the sacraments (and) the Christian message on matrimony."
In functional terms, Pope Francis is asking priests to get to know their parishioners, acknowledge their struggles, and to make an effort to gently bring them back into alignment with the Church. Pope Francis has called for discernment to be used in these cases.
However, this caused some questions to develop as a few clergy wondered if this should mean that communion ought to be offered to people who are effectively living in a sinful state.
To clarify this situation, four cardinals including Cardinal Burke from the USA, sent a letter to Pope Francis asking a series of questions about his letter. The Holy Father declined to respond.
His refusal to reply opened the possibility that the cardinals might issue a correction, a very rare case in the Church that allows cardinals to act to preserve the teaching of the Church.
But now, Cardinal Muller, who is responsible for defending the doctrine of the Church has spoken, defending the papal document.
"I do not see any opposition," he said during an interview for an Italian news outlet. "On one side we have the clear doctrine on matrimony, and on the other the obligation of the church to care for these people in difficulty."
It is unclear if this will be the final word in the matter.
Pope Francis has issued no response to the questions, other than to make it known he will not be responding to them.
His refusal to reply has some wondering if there is a conflict between the Pope and some of his cardinals, but this conclusion is woefully premature. Robust debate and discussion is part of how the Church operates. It is normal for the popes and clergy to occasionally take sides on issues that confront the Church. Such debate should not be construed as schism brewing or as acrimonious. It is normal and healthy.
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