Rorate Caeli

Holy See Refutes News Reports on Communion for "Remarried-Divorced"

This clears it up: there is no document being prepared.

 From Zenit:

A recent news report stating that the Pontifical Council for the Family is working on a document on distributing Communion to divorced people who have sought to re-marry prompted a denial from the Holy See.

An article by an Italian news agency claimed that Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, to draft a document to find “a solution” for those who are "remarried divorced persons" to receive Communion. The report also claimed that the Holy Father’s move was prompted by requests from “many Italian bishops.”

The report spread throughout various news and media agencies in the country.

In a statement released by the Holy See Press Office, the Pontifical Council for the Family denied the bogus reports.

“The Pontifical Council for the Family declares that there is no basis to the news, circulated by some press agencies, that a document on distributing Communion to remarried divorced persons is being prepared,” the communique stated.


Original article here.

11 comments:

Uncle Claibourne said...

Translation? Trial balloon. It's about to happen.

On a related but separate topic, I was out for dinner with a salesman I work with tonight. He and his wife just celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary, and took a trip to Italy to celebrate the occasion.

They're both Methodist, and had never been to the Vatican before. He told me that they were both literally in tears, witnessing the beauty weak human beings had built and created to give honor and glory to God in they best way they possibly could. He compared it to the sacrifices of Abel, as opposed to the inadequate sacrifices of Cain that brought down the wrath of God. God deserves OUR BEST.

There's a lesson here for you bishops, priests, and even cardinals who may read this blog. In your rush to make the Church "relevant," to make her "poor," you are driving away so many precious souls who are drawn to the Faith by the beauty she has inspired in the hearts of men; men who sacrificed everything they had to give due honor and glory to an infinite, merciful, Triune God.

It's moments like this where the foolishness of the last 50 years really hits home for poor laity like me. Please, hierarchs, wake up.


ka said...

maybe they have not started work on it yet. if it happens it will be an insult to those who pursue marital fidelity through thick and thin. It also means the Church would be legitimising divorce contrary to existing teaching.

Common Sense said...

What an agonizing thought about unhappy split-up couples!Some broke up for trivial issues. The divorce rate in mainstream NO reaches plague proportion, that the church authority are seriously unsure what to do.

Adam P. said...

I don't think it's about to happen. I have a dear friend who just received an annulment after a 14-month wait. There's no way the church would officially circumvent the annulment process and give communion to Catholic who are divorced and remarried without regularizing their situation. Our Archbishop affirmed as much during his first press conference.

Garrett said...

If such a thing were to happen, you can content yourself with knowing this entire religion to be a farce since it is logically impossible to uphold the Church's teaching concerning the proper state in which to receive Holy Communion while at the same time cohabiting and boinking someone who's not your spouse. Not possible.

Alexis

Liam Ronan said...

On 14 September 1994 the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, then headed by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, published a document, i.e. “Letter To The Bishops Of The Catholic Church Concerning The Reception Of Holy Communion By The Divorced And Remarried Members Of The Faithful” which stated in pertinent part:

“The faithful who persist in such a situation (divorced and remarried outside the Church) may receive Holy Communion only after obtaining sacramental absolution, which may be given only "to those who, repenting of having broken the sign of the Covenant and of fidelity to Christ, are sincerely ready to undertake a way of life that is no longer in contradiction to the indissolubility of marriage. This means, in practice, that when for serious reasons, for example, for the children's upbringing, a man and a woman cannot satisfy the obligation to separate, they 'take on themselves the duty to live in complete continence, that is, by abstinence from the acts proper to married couples'"(8). In such a case they may receive Holy Communion as long as they respect the obligation to avoid giving scandal.”

This is the only exception I am aware of.

Liam Ronan said...

Just a few further thoughts:
My understanding is that a declaration of nullity is not infallible, hence some who have been granted ‘annulments’ have had an erroneous judgement from the Marriage Tribunal and their first marriage remains valid in God’s eyes.
Conversely, there are those (judging by the Marriage Tribunal’s criteria of what constitutes a valid marriage) who lacked the necessary conditions for contracting marriage in the first instance and yet have remained together with the same spouse, i.e. they are not married in God’s eyes?
Confusing at best.
By the way the link to the CDF document to which I referred earlier is http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_14091994_rec-holy-comm-by-divorced_en.html

Unknown said...

The pontificate of Benedict XVI and prior pontificates, all the way to Peter have answered these questions. Pope Francis filled with Holy Ghost is going to remain true to Jesus Christ. Do not worry folks, those saying the Pope will bring Scandal to the Holy Mother Church by letting sin through the door especially such vile sin as to receive the Holy Eucharist without being in a state of grace need to ask them if they truly believe that the Holy Ghost protects his Church. There is also the question whether they believe all that the Catholic Church teaches because Jesus cannot deceive nor be deceived.

Despite all the evidence of 2000 years worth, of consistent protection of the Holy Catholic Church from error, some of you here, especially Uncle Claibourne you behave as if the Holy Ghost is dead!! Trial Balloon? Hell will freeze before the Holy Ghost lets anything happen to his Church, and I mean exactly that, real hell freezing. God always keeps his promises.
Even if Pope Francis was a bad Bishop, that Bishop is Dead now, in him lives Peter Himself!

Patrick Gray said...

There is already a solution to this allegedly knotty problem. Don't.

Arthur said...

What is very sad, today, is that members of the clergy seem to make up their own rules as they go along. For example, my sister-in-law is non-Catholic (Methodist) and she attends Mass on Sunday with my brother and their daughter. After Mass one Sunday, my sister-in-law spoke to the pastor, a monsignor, and told him she felt "left out" during Communion because her husband and daughter could receive Holy Communion, but she couldn't. The monsignor asked my sister-in-law if she had been confirmed as a Christian in her Methodist faith and when she said "yes," the monsignor told her she was welcome to receive Holy Communion when she attends Mass with her husband and daughter. My sister-in-law now receives the Holy Eucharist every time she attends Mass. Not only that, but my sister-in-law told her own sister, also Methodist and married to a Roman Catholic, that she could receive Holy Communion when she attends Mass with her husband and family. As a cradle Catholic, I know that canon law prohibits reception of Holy Communion by persons not in communion with the church, so why does a monsignor feel he can ignore the laws of the church? I would not be surprised if there are bishops and priests who are already privately telling divorced, remarried Catholics that they can receive Holy Communion if their "conscience" tells them it's OK. After all, I know for a fact that's what many of the clergy tell their parishoners who choose to use artificial birth control, "It's OK if your conscience tells you so!"

Mark said...

“The faithful who persist in such a situation (divorced and remarried outside the Church) may receive Holy Communion only after obtaining sacramental absolution, which may be given only "to those who, repenting of having broken the sign of the Covenant and of fidelity to Christ, are sincerely ready to undertake a way of life that is no longer in contradiction to the indissolubility of marriage. This means, in practice, that when for serious reasons, for example, for the children's upbringing, a man and a woman cannot satisfy the obligation to separate, they 'take on themselves the duty to live in complete continence, that is, by abstinence from the acts proper to married couples'"(8). In such a case they may receive Holy Communion as long as they respect the obligation to avoid giving scandal.”

Yes, "living as brother and sister" has always been the "solution."

BUT. It's only a small leap from there to indicate that "sincerely ready" might have a looser meaning than has previously been thought.

The Church can't say that sex in a new marriage (with the previous one unannulled) is not adultery and thus objective mortal sin. But what I think you may see is a statement that, basically, the remarried shouldn't be treated differently than anyone else, and that as long as they've gone to confession beforehand (like everyone else: their own private business) their situation is the same as anybody else's.

Of course, some will say, the "problem" is that of valid contrition. Don't you have to intend to stop completely before contrition can be valid? Or, rather, is the conditions for contrition merely that you have to recognize that what you did was sin and have no specific intent at the moment to do it again, yet without giving (what a vademecum once called) "humanly impossible absolute guarantees."

Basically, I think the Church will eventually come out with something saying that, yes, sex within a new "marriage" is adultery and thus mortal sin. But that it is not to, practically, be treated differently than anyone else's sin in terms of benefit of the doubt regarding who's been to confession, who has successfully abstained, who has proper intent or contrition, etc.