Rorate Caeli

Card. Brandmüller strikes again before release of Amoris Laetitia

Dr. Maike Hickson, who often writes for Rorate, today has a story on a recent statement made by His Eminence Cardinal Walter Brandmüller ahead of the release of Amoris Laetitia -- being dubbed the "Joy of Sex." You'll remember the good cardinal last year said those who advocate changing Church teaching on marriage are "heretics."

From The Wanderer

Walter Brandmüller, a retired Curial Cardinal from Germany, published today, 6 April, on the Austrian Catholic website a strong statement ( in preparation for the upcoming Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis. He makes it clear that the pope is bound by the Dogmas of the Church, as they are also to be found in the Church’s Catechism.

The Cardinal says: “It is the Church’s magisterial teaching (Dogma) that a validly contracted and consummated marriage cannot be dissolved by any power of the world – also not by the Church herself.” Brandmüller reminds the readers that this teaching has been re-affirmed by both the Apostolic Exhortation Familiaris Consortio (1981) by Pope John Paul II and the Catechism of the Catholic Church (1997).

Brandmüller clearly says that he “who, in spite of an existing marriage bond, enters after a divorce into a new civil union, is committing adultery” and that – as long as that person “is not willing to put an end this situation” – he “cannot receive either absolution in Confession nor the Eucharist (Holy Communion).” Any other path, the cardinal insists, would be “bound to fail” due to “its inherent untruthfulness.” He continues: “This is valid also with regard to the attempt to integrate into the Church those who live in an invalid ‘second marriage’ by admitting them to liturgical, catechetical and other functions.” This path, in his eyes, would lead to “conflicts,” “embarrassments,” and an “undermining of the Church’s sacred proclamation.”

The Cardinal continues by saying that such newly attempted proposals “reveal themselves as attempts – with the help of ‘salami tactics’ – to finally admit these couples to the Sacraments.” He adds: “The ‘way out’, in order to allow exceptions, is an impasse. What is fundamentally impossible for reasons of Faith, is also impossible in the individual case.”

The German cardinal concludes his statement with the important sentence: “The post-synodal document, Amoris Laetitia, is therefore to be interpreted in light of the above-presented principles, especially since a contradiction between a papal document and the Catechism of the Catholic Church would not be imaginable.”