Thursday, 29 October 2015

The Wuerligig Cardinal keeps spinning and spinning; which way will it face?

Cardinal Wuerl continues to utter comments in the spirit of the recently held Synod that confound us. The latest is that:
“The frame of reference now is no longer the Code of Canon Law. The frame of reference is now going to be, ‘What does the Gospel really say here?’”
To which canonist Ed Peter’s responds.
“The 'frame of reference' for the mission of the Catholic Church has never, ever been the Code of Canon Law, and no canon lawyer I know of has ever, ever claimed otherwise. The 'frame of reference' for the Catholic Church has always been, and has only been, Christ the Lord."

During the lead-up to the Synod on the Family, the Pope issued a motu proprio modifying the process for declarations of nullity. Some have commented that this motu proprio will mean for the Church that which was previously admonished and ended by Rome in the United States in the early 1970's.

On  April 11, 1973, the  Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under the authority of Blessed Paul VI, issued a letter to the Bishops of the United States of America on "Invalid Marriages."

Letter regarding the indissolubility of marriage

This Sacred Congregation, which is responsible for defending the doctrine regarding faith and morals throughout the Catholic world, has been examining with careful attention the dissemination of new opinions which seek to deny or to put in doubt the doctrine regarding the indissolubility of marriage constantly proposed by the Magisterium of the Church.
These opinions are widespread, not only in books and newspapers, but also beginning to circulate even in seminaries, in Catholic schools, and even in the practices in some ecclesiastical tribunals of this or that Diocese.
Furthermore, these opinions, together with other doctrinal or pastoral explanations, have been advanced here and there as a pretext to justify abuses against the current discipline regarding the administration of the Sacraments to those who live in an irregular union.
Therefore, this Sacred Dicastery examined this problem during its Plenary Meeting of 1972, and issued its mandate, approved by the Supreme Pontiff, exhorting the Bishops to attentively insure that all those entrusted with teaching religion in schools or institutes of any grade, as well as those who serve as officials in ecclesiastical tribunals, remain faithful to the doctrine of the Church on the indissolubility of marriage and act in accord with this doctrine in their ecclesiastical tribunals.
Regarding the administration of the Sacraments, local Ordinaries should strive, on one hand, to encourage the observance of the discipline in force in the Church, and on the other hand, to act so that pastors of souls show particular solicitude toward those who live in an irregular union, seeking to resolve these cases through the use of the approved practices of the Church in the internal forum, as well as other just means.
Communicating these things to you with devoted respect, I remain yours,
+ Franjo Cardinal Seper
 + Jérôme Hamer, O.P.
Rome, April 11, 1973.

The following quote bears reading:
"A Catholic who is knowingly a partner in an invalid marriage is in reality and before God not married to his or her apparent spouse. Hence performance of the marriage act within that union is not a sacred and holy seal of married love, but really a wrongful use of sex. Those who have seriously disobeyed divine or ecclesiastical law by entering into an invalid marriage, and have perhaps committed many sins within that union, have a duty to return to grace as quickly as possible, and certainly to abstain from Holy Communion until they do soSome solution is always possible, even in the most difficult cases. At times one must accept a considerable amount of self-denial and bear the cross generously; but God’s grace is able to make even the most difficult burdens bearable. Even if individuals feel that they do not now have the moral strength to do what the law of God demands of them, they ought not despair. In prayer, faithful attendance at Mass, in doing the works of Christian love, they can with God’s grace gradually acquire the courage to do with peace whatever is necessary. Pastors and diocesan marriage tribunals will try to be of assistance to those in invalid marriages. Those seeking a good conscience in these matters must remember that their consciences are to be formed in the light of Church teachingEvery solution that is reached must be entirely faithful to the command of Christ that consummated and sacramental marriages can in no way be dissolved or treated as though they can be." 
The above quotation comes from page 514-515 from The Teaching of Christ: A Catholic Catechism for Adults published in 1983. (ISBN 0-87973-899-5).

The editors were Donald W Wuerl, Ronald Lawler OFM Cap and Thomas Comerford Lawler.

It would follow then, that Cardinal Wuerl knows very well what The Teaching of Christ is. It is, therefore, incumbent on the Cardinal to provide clarity, not obfuscation, truth and not distortion during his utterances with the media and Catholics in general as it relates to matters discussed at the Synod. 

Perhaps the good Cardinal can start a blog based upon his point at the opening of this post which was challenged by Ed Peters; it could be titled, WDTGRS. I'm sure Father Z wouldn't mind.

A line attributed to St. Thomas More, at least as spoken in the movie A Man for All Seasons, comes to mind.
"We must pray that when your head stops spinning, your face is front again."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

An excellent article. As Dr Anca-Maria Cernea of the Synod said, the truth is powerful. Card. Wuerl's words though are scary in their implication. Canon law will no longer be considered in Church teaching?

I also want to ask VC where is the music. The home page doesn't complete without it.

I will sign here as I am computer illiterate (my age) and don't fully understand the ID instructions below.

Sonia Vadnjal.