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Say it’s so, Joe, say it’s so

October 16, 2014

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz (Louisville KY) and I served together at the 2012 Synod and I was consistently edified by his example of love for the Church, for the Truth she proclaims, and for the people she serves. Thus, a recent comment by Kurtz, reported in Robert Royal’s valuable daily commentary on the 2014 Synod, seems a portent of some good that might yet come from it.

Per Royal: “A reporter who interviewed Cardinal Kasper this week informed the panel that Kasper claims there’s a growing majority for his position on Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics. Though the panel wouldn’t venture to say whether that was true, Archbishop Kurtz claimed that the general sense of the Extraordinary Synod is that that particular question will need to be studied by the experts between now and the 2015 follow-up Synod” emphasis added.

Could it be that, finally, the unswerving and public commitment of Cdls. Burke, Müller, and Pell, to name just three, to settled Church teaching on divorce and remarriage, on contrition and Confession, and on the nature of and the requisites for sharing in, the Eucharist, is bearing fruit? Could the fine essays of the authors of Remaining in the Truth of Christ (Ignatius, 2014), and perhaps even some posts by bloggers in the provinces, finally be having an impact on the consciousness of the Synod that certain ecclesiastical matters cannot simply be “felt” their way through, or “emoted” through, but instead have to be thought through by men and women who know what they are talking about and are ready to share that information with prelates, lest, from lack of knowledge or insufficient attention, incalculable harm be done to the Church’s mission and to the people she serves?

Please, say it’s so, Abp. Joe, say it’s so!

Why, even this comment lifted from today’s Language Group reports seems to acknowledge that doctrine is very, very much at stake in the so-called “disciplinary” question about reception of holy Communion by divorced-and-remarried Catholics: With regard to possibility of divorced and remarried persons partaking in the sacrament of the Eucharist, two main perspectives emerged: on the one hand, it was suggested that the doctrine not be modified and to remain as it is at present; on the other, to open up the possibility of communication, with an approach based on compassion and mercy, but only under certain conditions.” VIS 141016, emphasis added. Indeed, “only under certain conditions”.

Exactly.

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