Skip to comments.Cardinal opposes Vatican over church teaching on marriage
Posted on 11/08/2013 5:57:07 PM PST by ebb tide
Dealing with divorced and remarried: Cardinal Marx lays into the Vatican
Cardinal Marx : " We are going to see that the issue is completely discussed"
Should the Catholic Church allow divorced and remarried to be re-admitted to communion? No, says Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith at the Vatican. The Munich Cardinal Marx does not want to accept this.
Freising - The Bavarian bishops want a broad debate on the way that divorced and remarried people are treated by the Catholic Church. They distance themselves thereby from the Prefect of the Vatican congregation, the former Bishop of Regensburg Gerhard Ludwig Müller .
The discussions on this topic should not be narrowed solely to the teaching of the Church, said Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich at the end of the autumn meeting of the Bavarian bishops in Freising, "The Prefect of the Congregation cannot end the discussion . "
People who get divorced after a church wedding and marry again are, up to the present time, not equal members of the Catholic Church. They are excluded from church offices, they may not receive the Sacraments. Such is the teaching, even if some priests already behave differently.
"Make the voices of the grassroots audible "
Archbishop Müller still does not want to admit to communion divorced Catholics who have remarried, as before, whereas Marx says, "We are going to see that the issue is completely discussed". The response to a questionnaire sent by Pope St. Francis on the situation of marriage and the family was "an ambitious task." The general aim was to make the voices of the grassroots audible " .
The background of Marx's statements is a global opinion survey by the Vatican. State of the Church wants to find out the views of Catholic communities on sensitive issues, such as dealing with divorce and homosexuality. The document is planned by Pope Francis Special Synod of Bishops on the Family prepare in October 2014.
The Archbishop of Freiburg and Head of the German Bishops' Conference, Robert Zollitsch had repeatedly shown himself open to a new path. "They belong to the Church," he said at the end of the Autumn Plenary Assembly of the Bishops' Conference on remarried Catholics. The general aim was " to examine the entire range of ecclesiastical solutions."
The Pastoral Office of the Archdiocese of Freiburg issued in October Recommendations for the Pastoral Care to support people who are separated, divorced and after civil remarriage. To support people who are separated, divorced and after civil remarriage. If the marriage should have failed, it is important, "to be close to those and to support them who (deliberately) have not entered into any new partnership," it states in the text. Thus remarried have the way opened to them which was previously barred to them.
Cathcon- the whole relevant passage In particular, it is necessary to respect and to support in a pastoral manner the spiritual decision to participate in varied ways in the life of the Church and consciously to refrain from receiving the sacraments.
As a result of a responsibly-taken conscientious decision, in the specific situation, the possibility can be given to receive the sacraments of Baptism, Holy Communion, Confirmation, of reconciliation and anointing of the sick, inasmuch as the required specific disposition of faith is existent. The parish and consequently the Church as a whole are lived as a community in which reconciliation with past life history is possible and put specifically into practice. This is experienced as positive and strengthening not only by those affected, but also helps the whole community, to experience the merciful action of Jesus Christ at first-hand.
Marx calls for restraint in the case Tebartz van Elst
The Munich Cardinal also spoke about the affair of the Limburg Bishop Franz -Peter Tebartz van Elst - and called for restraint. "I would hope that some now will just keep their mouth shut," Marx said . He left open whether he was referring to the Chairman of the Regional Committee of Catholics in Bavaria. Albert Schmid recently defended Tebartz van Elst and thus incurred the displeasure of lay organizations.
Marx argued for waiting for the resolution of allegations. Marx regretted the increased numbers leaving the church in connection with the affair. The Bishop of Limburg has come under criticism because of his leadership style and the dramatic increase in costs for the new bishop's residence. Currently Bishop Tebartz van Elst is taking a break in the Lower Bavarian Benedictine monastery of Metten.
Of course they should be allowed to receive communion.
Sometimes one party to a divorce is completely innocent. The Bible also allows divorce in cases of adultry.
“Until death do us part” is a fact, not just an ideal. If someone attempts what would be an invalid remarriage after divorce they are committing adultery. This grave sin is what rightfully keeps them from receiving Holy Communion. The truly pastoral response would be to teach the truth about the lie which is divorce and give those burdened by it the support to live faithfully to the commandments of God.
This is true but that does not change the reality that the marriage still exists.
The Bible also allows divorce in cases of adultry.
A common Protestant error. Porneia mentioned in Matthew means an illicit sexual union, not adultery.
In the Religion forum, on a thread titled Cardinal opposes Vatican over church teaching on marriage, yarddog wrote:
Sometimes one party to a divorce is completely innocent. The Bible also allows divorce in cases of (sic) adultry.
I’m torn on this one because Jesus clearly says that some are caused to commit adultery because the infidelity of a spouse leads to divorce.
If the cause is another person, then there should be understanding.
On the other hand, he said/she saids are almost always impossible to sort out. And annulments sometimes seem so much like rationalizing something away.
Also, a strict standard is clear, understandable, and an incentive to live a certain way.
Yes, it’s always difficult for outsiders to weigh the blame when two people divorce.
But we’re talking about divorce and re-marriage. Even if someone is divorced against their will, and is not to blame for the divorce, they are still committing adultery if they decide to remarry. That remarriage is their decision, freely made.
Very difficult and unfortunate. But life isn’t always fair. Just because life is tough doesn’t give anyone a right to commit adultery.
Depends on who you are. This was and is no problem for the Kennedys who otherwise play at piousness. Or Biden, or Pelosi. If you’ve got the cash or the station, they’ve got Communion you.
“And divorce is such a tough thing in a family, everybody hurts.”
And abortion is such a tough thing in a family, everybody hurts, especially the baby that was murdered. Does that mean the parents are entitled to Holy Communion?
Adultery and murder (abortion) are both mortal sins. And if one dies in a state of mortal sin what happens?
My own cousins had an abusive father and he was perfectly happy to live out his life married but cheating on my Aunt, out drinking every night and gone every weekend spending all of their money. My aunt finally got a divorce and went into counseling with our Priest. She met a wonderful man, for her and her children, and they celebrated their 40th Wedding Anniversary this past summer. Do not compare that with Abortion!
and resolve to sin no more, i.e. refrain from adulterous affairs.
To pretend that a valid marriage no longer exists so that the parties can "get on with their lives" is a false charity. Imposed celibacy is indeed a hardship but is this not one of those times when we need to listen to our Lord and "take up our cross and follow him"? As Christians we need to have the faith to live the gospel.
There are times that separation and a civil divorce is justified but this does not invalidate the existing marriage. As Christians do we take the words of our Lord seriously or are we just play acting?
So are we disagreeing specifically about annulments now?
An annulment is a declaration that a marriage never truly existed, not the dissolution of a valid marriage. Those annulled and remarried are free to receive Communion.
Those divorced and remarried have always been able to approach the Church and seek forgiveness but the sin is the adultery while still validly married. The alleged divorce is a falsehood; the original marriage (assuming no annulment) still endures. Are you proposing that we just pretend that it does not exist? Are you suggesting that we should have more compassion than our Lord Jesus Christ who said: “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery”?
I am Catholic. Annulments are fine with me if done for the right reasons and properly. Now you’re quoting Jesus Christ on divorce. Please quote Jesus Christ on Annulments. I am completely at ease with the Annulment as a Catholic teaching, but I don’t believe their is no way back to God because you are divorced. I don’t believe God treats divorce the same as Abortion or Murder. Call me a heretic. I am not of the belief that many good people I know are condemned to hell over a divorce.
If an annulment is not possible then the fact is that the original marriage continues after the civil divorce. Do we follow the words of our Lord or not?
It was the 1960s and she wasn't offered an annulment, but after divorced, as I have said, received counseling and forgiveness.
Forgiveness yes, but without an annulment her marriage still exists. If any priest told her that a civil divorce actually dissolved the marriage and that after absolution she was free to marry then he lied to her. She would still be married to her husband and bound to remain chaste in her marriage.
The gospel has many crosses that we must bear, involuntary celibacy being one of them. It is only with true faith that we can follow Jesus Christ. While we should always have compassion on those who through weakness fall into sin, we can never declare what is sinful to be good. Nor can we cease to call sinners away from their sins.
Nor did I ever imply that. If someone divorces then they can always seek forgiveness for whatever culpability they had that caused the divorce. They can also receive forgiveness for any acts of adultery they may have committed after a civil divorce against what is still a valid marriage. This seems to be the point that you will not acknowledge. A civil divorce does not dissolve a valid marriage. The teaching of Jesus Christ on divorce and remarriage was something new and contrary to the Mosaic law. The importance of this is emphasized by the fact that it is included in all three of the synoptic gospels, being given twice in Matthew. If we are to be true followers of Jesus Christ we cannot just pretend that he said what he did regarding divorce and remarriage.
I am not of the belief that many good people I know are condemned to hell over a divorce.
You keep trying to put this in terms of divorce. The true question is that of adultery while bound by a still valid marriage.
I am but a layperson but no Priest I have ever known would agree with you. I am not divorced, nor are 99% of my family. Do you think every Protestant and Jew is going to hell for committing Adultery if divorced?
"I say to you, whoever divorces his wife (unless the marriage is unlawful) and marries another commits adultery. [Matthew 19:9]
Who would claim that someone should be bound by a marriage that in reality does not, and never did, exist? An annulment is just the answer to the question: Is this a true marriage?
and the only way a person can not be labeled an Adulterer for the rest of their lives if they are divorced.
Divorce does not make a person an adulterer, adultery does. If a person remains unmarried after a divorce and does not engage in sexual activity there is no adultery.
Do you think every Protestant and Jew is going to hell for committing Adultery if divorced?
I will leave all judgments to God. This is a nice trick of yours in trying to avoid the issue of our Lord's teaching while making an emotional appeal. Do you believe what our Lord said when he said that if any divorces and marries again that he is committing adultery? This is the only question.
Forgiveness, for any sin, must always be accompanied by the resolution to sin no more. Again, it is not the fact that a person is divorced is the sin, it is having sexual relations with someone other than your spouse that is the sin of adultery. No sexual relations, no sin. Are we bound by the teaching of Jesus Christ or not?
“Unless the marriage is unlawful” does not exist in Matthew19:9!
1 When Jesus finished these words, he left Galilee and went to the district of Judea across the Jordan. 2 Great crowds followed him, and he cured them there. 3 Some Pharisees approached him, and tested him, saying, Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any cause whatever? 4 He said in reply, Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator made them male and female 5 and said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, no human being must separate. 7 They said to him, Then why did Moses command that the man give the woman a bill of divorce and dismiss [her]? 8 He said to them, Because of the hardness of your hearts Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. 9 I say to you, whoever divorces his wife (unless the marriage is unlawful) and marries another commits adultery.
Are you saying if a woman is divorced by her husband she isn’t allowed Communion anymore? Is this what you are saying? What about a couple who converts to Catholicism and they are both divorced and remarried to each other? Are you going to tell them, “Sure you can join our church but we won’t let you take Communion”, and deny them the very sacrament Catholics claim is essential to salvation? Hey...if that’s the case, send them to the nearest Evangelical church we and God accept all sinners who want to be saved by grace!
For the unbelieving husband is sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified through her believing husband; for otherwise your children are unclean, but now they are holy. Yet if the unbelieving one leaves, let him leave; the brother or the sister is not under bondage in such cases, but God has called us to peace. (I Corinthians 7:14-15)
No, what you say is not the only question. There is no “trick”. You take a firm stand on Biblical teaching when it suits you, but when asked another direct question, you “leave all judgments to God”. But you know perfectly well Adultery is a mortal sin and have no problem damning those that are divorced and remarried.
What I believe is that as a God of Love and Mercy, God will judge us all as individuals and the fact that a person doesn’t have an annulment in their filing cabinet isn’t going to be the deciding factor. Of course Jesus
Christ taught us that divorce is wrong, it comes with a lot of pain, breaks up the most desired family unit and is never good for society as a whole.
Please read my posts. The fact that someone is divorced is not a sin. The sin is if someone who is in a valid marriage has sexual relations with someone other than his spouse. This is adultery and this can always be forgiven provided that there is the resolution to sin no more. Civil divorce has no more reality other than property rights, the marriage still exists.
What about a couple who converts to Catholicism and they are both divorced and remarried to each other? Are you going to tell them, Sure you can join our church but we wont let you take Communion, and deny them the very sacrament Catholics claim is essential to salvation?
Again trying to use an emotional appeal to avoid the reality of our Lord's teaching. The question is whether there is a valid marriage that still perdures despite a civil divorce. If it does then the spouses are bound by this. If you object to this your objection is not with me and not with the Catholic Church but with Jesus Christ.
And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that marrieth her when she is put away committeth adultery. (English Revised)
And I say to you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that shall marry her that is put away, committeth adultery. (Douay-Rheims)
And I say to you, Whoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, commits adultery: and whoever marries her which is put away does commit adultery. (American KJV)
And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery. (English Standard Version)
I have never once damned the divorced and remarried. Even here, as with all sins and all sinners, I leave the judgment to God. But this does not allow us to ignore the reality that divorce does not dissolve a marriage and that the spouse are bound by it.
Catholic.org as well as other translations do not use that wording.
Nope...not an “emotional appeal” at all, just a rational question that probably happens frequently these days. Don’t tell me there isn’t some precedent for something like this? A couple, both already divorced and remarried to each other - let’s throw in a couple of kids, to make the argument realistic - decides they want the family to join the Catholic Church. What do you tell them, “Sorry, you don’t meet our qualifications and we won’t let you take Communion.”? “We’ll take the kids, but you two aren’t allowed.”?
A grave (mortal) sin condemns a person and you know that perfectly well. So why so shy on what you believe is the truth now?
You need to brush up on your catechism. Grave matter is only one of the criteria for mortal sin. The others are sufficient reflection and the full consent of the will. This is why the Catholic Church has always taught that we can judge the sin but not the sinner.
Not our qualifications but those of Jesus Christ.
You’re changing your tune the longer this thread gets...
I have never made a statement about the state of anyone’s soul. I have only commented on the reality of their objective actions. This is classic distinction in Catholic theology.
They are allowed if they separate from the sexual partner they are not free to marry.
A point well made. If they divorced and remarried before coming to saving faith then though their sins were as scarlet they shall be white as snow. Same thing for a convicted murderer. Comes to the Lord in prison, we welcome them to the Body of Christ, they do their time.
When I once went with a friend to her Protestant denomination church, they passed around Communion and I didn’t dream of taking it. My friend asked why, and it wasn’t because I was Catholic, just that in the Catholic church it was done differently, and I had to study and make my First Communion before going up for Communion on a regular basis. This was my child’s eye view, not thinking a Protestant Reformation had been started over things such as this!
Now as an Adult, I see Protestants and Catholics as more defined by
stylistic differences then pure substance. Yes there are still some major
disagreements and misunderstandings, but we all believe in Jesus Christ as Savior. But you and the hypothetical family would be allowed to attend my Catholic church service at anytime, and I think I’d be welcomed at your service. Granted, you may share your communion with me perhaps, but I would have to tell you that you needed to be a member of the Church first. But you would be welcomed to come and learn and attend Mass, Catechism class if you wanted, come to our group meetings, speak with the Priest, and to become a Catholic.
Technically, I haven’t been to confession in so long I probably shouldn’t be taking communion!
A previously divorced and remarried husband and wife with two kids want to convert to Catholicism and you would tell them they have to break up the family (divorce) first??? Seriously?!
Let's remember that Jesus was answering some Pharisees' questions - who thought they could trip him up - about Moses' marriage and divorce laws. Is this all that different from His reminding them of the SPIRIT of the law over the letter of the law, like lusting after a woman was adultery? I don't deny that marriage is serious and not to be entered into lightly and that it is designed BY God to be a permanent bond. What should be considered is those cases where the divorce has already happened before a couple wants to be Christians. Do you not think there is forgiveness with Christ and understanding from Christians?
So, the reality of a remarried person not having had an annulment is that they are going to hell.
That is the “reality of their objective actions” that you've been harping on whole thread. That is judgment.
No Priest I have ever known would break up a family in order to allow them to become Catholic! They would work with them within Catholic guidelines and with a Bishop’s guidance to help them become members of the church all the while an intact family. After all, in the end we would want a healthy, functioning Catholic family. Many times, people find the Church as single mothers, never having been married. No we don’t throw them out!
I just have to add a little levity here. When my sister had her first serious boyfriend, he asked what Religion she was. She replied “Catholic”.He gasped in shock, and said he was a Baptist. My sister said OK. Her then boyfriend said “But... But... We pass around bread but you guys use a REAL BODY up on that alter!” My sister never laughed so hard in her life. Nice guy we still see around town, but not the brightest bulb in the box!(Not representative of all Baptists, I know!)
Jesus says someone else causes it