Card. Rodriguez Maradiaga: ongoing synodal process until result is obtained?

At the Italian site Nuova Bussola, we find the observations of Oscar Card. Rodriguez Maradiaga about the possibility of Communion for the divorced and remarried.

Impossible? “No!”, says the Cardinal.

And if the upcoming Synod rejects the proposal, the Kasperite Solution, hey!… maybe there could be a third synod on the question!

And His Eminence seems to be putting a great deal of stock in polls.

I’m in my car in a parking lot, so I can’t do the translation at the time of this posting.

In tutto il mondo, aggiunge Maradiaga, “i sondaggi dicono che la gente non vuole sposarsi, né in Chiesa, né civilmente, e il Vangelo della famiglia deve essere annunciato, perchè è il progetto di Dio e deve essere sommamente considerato dalla Chiesa”.
Il problema “non è, come alcuni media hanno detto, sulla possibilità dei divorziati risposati di accedere all’eucaristia, no, ci sono cose molto più profonde e che devono essere affrontate nel Sinodo”.
Secondo il Card. Maradiaga il medoto del sinodo, che sarebbe quello di “vedere, giudicare e attuare”, potrebbe anche portare alla convocazione di una terza tappa. “Non sappiamo se alla fine del sinodo di ottobre si chiuderà il processo [sinodale], o se il Papa ne convocherà un terzo, potrebbe essere, perchè si tratta di cose molto importanti…”

Ongoing synods until the desired result is obtained?

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56 Responses to Card. Rodriguez Maradiaga: ongoing synodal process until result is obtained?

  1. Elizabeth D says:

    So laughable. I don’t think Pope Francis supports this stuff.

    The divorced and civilly “remarried” can receive Holy Communion, if they agree to live “as brother and sister”, in continence. This solution already exists!

  2. RJHighland says:

    Cardinal Rodriguez is not playing on the same team as Cardinal Brandmuller, some would wonder if he belongs to the same faith. Way to keep the site balanced Father, I was feeling way to good about things after the Cardinal Brandmuller and SSPX posts.

  3. iPadre says:

    Our Lady talked about division among Cardinals and Bishops, we have seen a lot of this. But, it didn’t stop there. “If men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a punishment greater than the deluge, such as one will never have seen before. Fire will fall from the sky and will wipe out a great part of humanity” With the world situation, I think we may be close.

  4. iPadre says:

    That is in Akita.

  5. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    Permanent revolution.

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

  6. FrAnt says:

    Sounds like the Original Sin is still alive and well. The problem is that it has found a welcomed home in some of the disciples of Christ.

  7. Theodore says:

    “The beatings will continue until morale improves.”

  8. Landless Laborer says:

    It seems to be a plausible strategy, it generally works in politics. The root of the problem in the Church goes back to the disciplinary arm, the CDF. Unless the CDF begins throwing out heretics again as it once did, Mother Church will find herself in a situation with conflicting traditions. I mean that seems to be where things are headed barring divine intervention which must surely be coming. But how do we deserve divine intervention when we pamper heretics?

  9. Michael_Thoma says:

    O Lord, arise within your most holy body the Church another Sts Nicholas and Athanasius, neither afraid to preach Truth nor earthly consequences!

    Some of these so-called fathers need to see Roman purple on the mouth, as did Arius!

  10. sw85 says:

    This is a common lefty tactic, and it’s exactly how the Anglicans got suckered into lesbian bishopesses etc. The discussions and clarifications continue (and continue and continue and continue) until the desired result is achieved, whereupon, hey, it’s been handed down on stone tablets from Mt. Sinai you retrograde heretic!

  11. “I don’t think Pope Francis supports this stuff.”

    Whereas he did choose Card. Rodriguez Maradiaga–whose views have been well-known for years–as Coordinator of his Council of Cardinal Advisors. And many or most of his high-level appointees appear to have similar views.

  12. McCall1981 says:

    I agree that the reference to a possible third synod is pretty chilling. But since the first synod, Maradiaga has consistently downplayed the communion issue. He said basically this same thing a few months ago:

    “Many identified as the unique and fundamental topic, issues that were merely secondary. For example, we did not talk only about giving “communion” to re-married Christians —that was a collateral argument, it was never essential. What was really said, and I repeat and emphasize, is that the realities of dissolved and rebuilt families are not an impediment to live and participate in the abundant life of the Church; that the “sacramental communion” is not the only way to vitally participate in the pastoral dynamic of the parish community”
    http://www.scu.edu/ethics-center/events/cardinal-rodriguez-transcript.cfm#sthash.113Cg4ns.dpuf

    To me, if anything, he seems to downplaying and backing off this issue.

  13. Andrew says:

    Post secundas nuptias etiam de tertio et quarto matrimonio disputandum est.

  14. Elizabeth D says:

    I think because Maradiaga is the head of Caritas International and Pope Francis wanted a greater focus on the poor, the works of mercy, “going out to the peripheries” (Maradiaga’s diocese of Tegucigalpa is certainly the peripheries) and accompanying people, as something both fundamental to the Gospel and, and which comes prior to people becoming more open to difficult teachings of the Church.

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  16. Benedict Joseph says:

    Besides being most often scandalized by what is said by ecclesiastics presently in favor, I am concurrently mortified and embarrassed for them, and for the ecclesial subculture for which they speak. All manner of analogies, clichés at best – “Like a four year old with a machine gun” often comes to mind. Visions, too, of the adolescent on his first date, or decorating his first apartment. But in this new church under construction is there no accountability for adults? One use to be able to appeal to tradition, canon law, conscience, even the Decalogue. In professional life when one finds himself with greater authority there is a mentor available to remind the newly appointed that dominance is a responsibility. However, here all corrective admonitions, even from their peers, are regarded as inconsequential reservations offered by naives. I keep hearing my Irish grandmother, who had a colorful way of putting it, not acceptable here, but to paraphrase, “Like a chump on horseback, riding to perdition.”
    Pitiful.

  17. DisturbedMary says:

    As has been said by others here , this is a classic leftist, modernist, progressive tactic. Never go away. Keep coming back. Zombie theologians.

  18. Cantor says:

    Dr. Peters – Isn’t this characteristic about many ‘changes’ in society? People in favor of change will fight the status quo for years on end until at last they get their way. Then, suddenly, the issue “has been long decided in the public forum” and it’s inappropriate and just plain wrong to discuss it further. It’s on to the next perceived inequality!

  19. TNCath says:

    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again in the hope that the end result will eventually turn out differently.

  20. aquinasadmirer says:

    I think because Maradiaga is the head of Caritas International and Pope Francis wanted a greater focus on the poor, the works of mercy, “going out to the peripheries” (Maradiaga’s diocese of Tegucigalpa is certainly the peripheries)

    It all depends on what is defined as a periphery. The SSPX is a periphery, St. Agnes in St. Paul, MN is another, the underground church in China. The pope hasn’t given specific characteristics (that I know of) to define what is a periphery. For some, Latin American and Sub-saharan Africa is the middle of the Church. For others, the middle is Western Europe. It’s hard to know.

    Mother Teresa referred to the United States as the most impoverished country she’d ever visited. She was speaking spiritually, of course.

  21. Priam1184 says:

    Yes Father this has been the modus operandi of the forces of rebellion that have been at work in the formerly Catholic world since the 18th century at least. You don’t get everything you want in 1789, keep pushing and and you’ll get your 1793. When the forces of 1793 seem to be pushed back a bit keep going and you’ll get your 1848. When 1848 doesn’t give you everything you want (and they never can get everything they want) keep pushing until 1871. When 1871 doesn’t work for you then keep pushing until 1917 comes along.

    They will never stop coming at the Church, from the inside and outside, until the Last Day comes. So we must fight the battle with all of the arsenal that God gives us, starting with prayer and penance and study, so we know what it is that we are defending.

  22. govmatt says:

    This is all very disturbing… on a lighter note, Father did coin an excellent band name: “Ongoing Synodal Process”

  23. albizzi says:

    Il problema “non è, come alcuni media hanno detto, sulla possibilità dei divorziati risposati di accedere all’eucaristia, no, ci sono cose molto più profonde e che devono essere affrontate nel Sinodo”.

    Which are these “much more deep things” that must be adressed during the Synod? I am fearing a lot of apalling modernist novelties.

  24. Aquinas Gal says:

    Look at this from another angle: bishops and cardinals are revealing who they really are and what they really believe. Right now the liberals seem to have the upper hand, but in the end, God always wins. And the faithful are starting to realize which cardinals and bishops support Catholic teaching and which ones don’t.

  25. Dr. Edward Peters says:

    “Mother Teresa referred to the United States as the most impoverished country she’d ever visited. She was speaking spiritually, of course.” Then she didn’t spend much time in at least half of Europe.

  26. JPK says:

    Cdl Maradiaga is only following the Bertolt Brecht method:

    “Stating that the people
    Had forfeited the confidence of the government
    And could win it back only
    By redoubled efforts. Would it not be easier
    In that case for the government
    To dissolve the people
    And elect another?”

    Substitute the word “people” with the word “Bishops”, and government with Vatican

  27. kpoterack says:

    I don’t know Italian well, but I ran this passage through both Google and Babylon translation and both gave me something like this:

    “Around the world, adds Maradiaga, ‘the polls tell us that the people do not want to marry, nor to the Church, nor civilly, and the Gospel of the family must be announced, because it is the project of God and must be supremely regarded by the Church.’ The problem ‘is not, as some of the media have said, on the possibility of the divorced and remarried to access to the Eucharist, no, there are much deeper things and which must be addressed in the Synod . . .”

    To be fair, it seems that the cardinal is chiding the press for focusing on this one issue and saying that there are “deeper things which must be addressed,” – whatever his opinions on the matter in question.

  28. Mario Bird says:

    @ Dr. Peters:

    Permanent Revolution : Ongoing Synod on the Family :: Continuous Constitutional Convention : SCOTUS

  29. Blaise says:

    This is just like the referenda in the European a few years back on the new constitution. Ireland voted “no” so they had another one until they voted “yes”

  30. Robbie says:

    Cardinal Maradiaga’s comments that the Synod could continue until the desired results are obtained reminds me of Al Gore’s strategy during the Florida recount: just keep recounting the votes until he wins.

  31. Lori Pieper says:

    My translation of the complete question and answer from the original Spanish:

    “INFOVATICANA asks about the Extraordinary Synod on the family. What steps do you think might be taken in pastoral care in extraordinary and irreversible situations?

    The Synod that took place was the first one, following the method of seeing, judging and acting. The first one was for seeing, now it is a matter of judging. For this the problems of a theological nature that arose have been reported to theological commissions, then the surveys that are sent out, which is very important, seeing that it has to lead to taking action. We do not know if at the end of the October synod the process will close, or if the Pope will convene a third, it might be, because we are talking about such important things …

    Moreover, in the Pope’s view this is the most important problem in the world and in the Church: the breakdown of the family, and the survey result everywhere was that now people do not want to marry, either in the Church or civilly, and the Gospel of the family must be announced, because it is God’s plan, and must be supremely [important] for the Church. It is not as some media have said, about whether the divorced and remarried can receive Communion, no, there are much more profound things and they have to be addressed in the Synod.”

    The surveys are evidently those sent to dioceses.

  32. acardnal says:

    I wish Cdl. Maradiaga would stop giving speeches all over the world and spend more time in his own country fighting rampant corruption and the need for improved social policies to help the poor he is responsible for.

  33. William Tighe says:

    Is Cardinal Maradiaga an Anglican? I mean, remember in various Anglican synodal debates on “women’s (pretended) ordination” (TEC in 1979, 73 and 76 comes to mind, as also the Church in Wales in the 1990s), when WO was accepted there was all that blather about the Holy Spirit (which I would rather characterize as the Holy Zeitgeist) leading them on, etc. and ad nauseam, but when synods voted WO down, then votes were held again and again until the proponents of WO got their way.

    It is said that President Warren G. Harding’s father once said to him ruefully, “Warren, it’s a good thing you wasn’t born a gal.” When the boy asked why, Mr. Harding responded, “Because you’d be in the family way all the time. You can’t say No.” Can the same thing be true of the Holy Spirit, that the answer is always “yes?”

  34. Gail F says:

    Thanks for that translation, Lori Pieper. I think Elizabeth D is right and the pope wants to figure out how to reach the many, many, MANY extremely poor people in the world. Synods can go on for a long time and/or reconvene. I don’t think he’s saying they will need to be locked up without food, as the bishops were at the first conclave (which MEANS “locked up”), until they come to a desired conclusion.

  35. Traductora says:

    One of the problems with all of this is that Cdl Maradiaga is a very slippery person, and virtually everything he says is ambiguous. But of course, that’s the same as Pope Francis and the same as most of the VII documents. Things that sound orthodox…lamenting the fact that nobody gets married anymore, for example…then double back and it turns out that nobody gets married because of Church doctrine.

    Since the latter has been barely enforced for the last 50 years, and since most people don’t know it anyway, because of poor or no instruction, I don’t think you can blame doctrine. But that will turn out to be the reason that people don’t get married, according to “progressives” such as Maradiaga, and therefore, we must simply throw it out.

  36. Lavrans says:

    aquinasadmirer wrote “…It all depends on what is defined as a periphery… St. Agnes in St. Paul, MN is another”

    I would not call St. Agnes on the periphery in the Twin Cities. The FSSP parish at All Saints in Minneapolis and Chesterton Academy are more “peripheral.” St. Agnes is a wonderful parish and school, but certainly more mainstream than All Saints and Chesterton. In fact, they are quickly become a prominent leader in St. Paul.

  37. everett says:

    This is the standard “synthesis” model that has been used for decades. The Church has a “thesis”, opposition has an “antithesis”, and to compromise, a “synthesis” is reached. The synthesis becomes the new thesis, the opposition never changes it’s antithesis (except possibly to make it worse than before), and then a new synthesis is reached, even further away from the original truth. And so on, and so forth, until down is up and wrong is right.

  38. anilwang says:

    No surprise. This is the standard operating procedure among liberals that’s repeatedly played out in Protestant denominations.

    Take the issue of contraception. It was brought forward in the Anglican Lambeth Synod repeatedly and repeatedly rejected. But each time it was brought forward, ways are found to exclude orthodox voices and a different spin was added to win over others that rejected the last vote. But eventually, a slim majority one out with a very minor exception (essentially, only in marriage and only if you were open to life and had a really good reason such as health of the mother). That exception was subsequently expanded to irrelevance and eventually turned into a right.

    Issue after issue, liberals have used this tactic to overthrough Protestant doctrine.

    Liberals have gotten very good at synod manipulation, so make no mistake, if other synods are called on the issue, eventually they will get the result they want and it will be up to the Pope to decide what to do.

  39. Imrahil says:

    Well, dear Elizabeth,

    the point about agreeing to live as brother and sister is that you need the partner to, well, agree to it.

    People who are firmly faithful Catholics and, in addition, actually know about their duties – well, we all fall into sin sometimes, but on the whole they won’t enter a remarriage after divorce, anyway.

    So, we might expect that issue to come up when one of two such people convert (either to Catholicism or as a Catholic to religious life). The probability that this happens to the two of them at the same instant (or within very short time) is probably not too big. And then, if one of them doesn’t agree to live as brother and sister, breaking up would be the only option. (I don’t suppose withholding oneself from the other who expects one to live with him or her as a married couple is going to ruin the relationship… so deciding it one-sidedly is not an option either.)

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  41. JonPatrick says:

    If only the bishops dealt with the actual issues of the family. Instead of trying to come up with a loophole so that divorced and remarried Catholics can receive communion without having to repent, how about looking at why the divorce rate among Catholics, who supposedly believe in the sanctity of marriage, is as high as it is in the secular world? Or that the vast majority of Catholics use artificial contraception? Or the abysmal level of catechesis among young people that can be traced to parents who themselves do not know their faith?

    It is like the bishops here in the US who see their main concern the various liberal social issues like Illegal Immigration while the church collapses around them. I see that predictably they came out in favor of Obama’s disastrous Iran treaty. No doubt we will be hearing homilies on this shortly.

  42. The Masked Chicken says:

    Aww, man…I’m in a fowl mood, today and I had some really good scathing paragraphs to write about this mess, but I think I’ll resist the urge to post them. Is this resisting sin or do some situations just call for scathing paragraphs? Would the world be better off without St. Jerome’s biting commentary? He, certainly, repented of them, but, still, I sometimes wonder if the dog of fraternal correction might not snarl from time to time instead if licking you hand.

    The Chicken

  43. Benedict Joseph says:

    The dog of fraternal correction is man’s best friend indeed.

    If a good man strikes or reproves me it is kindness;
    but let the oil of the wicked not anoint my head.
    Psalm 141:5

    Whoever is dear to me I reprove and chastise. Be earnest about it, therefore. Repent!
    Revelation 3:19

    Isn’t this exactly the problem at present? Far too many bishops at every level, priests, religious, theologians, catechists, et al., are enamored of the decomposed corpse of the protestant revolt. Perhaps the Jubilee of Mercy will see a spiritual work of mercy – admonition of the sinner – exercised with authority. Unambiguous Papal authority? Regretfully, doubtful.

  44. gracie says:

    Is there any move to have Catharine of Aragon declared a Saint?

    If not, there should be. Here was a good woman who was abandoned by her husband, Henry VIII, so he could marry someone else. She endured great suffering as she was held a virtual prisoner under house arrest for years. Abandoned, discarded, ostracized, humiliated – as are so many women today when their husbands “move on” to wife number 2/3/4, etc. Why does the Synod never talk about the heroic lives many of these women are living as they work to keep their vows? Neither Pope Francis, nor the majority of bishops and priests ever talk about these women, never honor them, or publicly even acknowledge that they exist. The truth is that if the plight of these women openly was acknowledged, it would get in the way of condoning the polygamy – yes, polygamy – that currently is being promoted by so many of these heretical clerics. If Communion for the divorced and remarried is adopted, then I would advise these women to get a boyfriend, repent of it, say some prayers, after which they can keep their boyfriends *and* Jesus. That’s the way to have your cake and eat it too, if this insane “pastoral approach” goes through.

    (And yes, I know there are men who are abandoned and it is terrible for them too. The fact is, though, that mostly it’s women who find themselves in this situation.)

  45. aquinasadmirer says:


    I would not call St. Agnes on the periphery in the Twin Cities. The FSSP parish at All Saints in Minneapolis and Chesterton Academy are more “peripheral.” St. Agnes is a wonderful parish and school

    There are more than a few up the road in Collegeville who consider St. Agnes to be on the kooky fringe. I supposed that’s a periphery in their minds.

    If you tell people who attend the run-of-the-mill milquetoast parish that you attend St. Agnes, be prepared to get funny looks, be called a kook, or worse..from Catholics. I get that when folks learn my parish is in St. Louis Park. We aren’t anywhere close to St. Agnes in many respects.

    Said differently, if a parish uses Latin in the quantities recommended in Sacrosanctum Concilium (or is moving in that direction) there are many who will break out in hives. To these folk, Latin usage defines “fringe”.

    …but, these are not the peripheries we are looking for.

  46. Justalurkingfool says:

    As far as I have read it is largely women who seek divorce, more so than men. I can cite:

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/homo-consumericus/201311/do-men-or-women-file-divorce-more-often

    http://divorcedmoms.com/articles/6-reasons-women-file-for-divorce-more-often-than-men

    http://divorcesupport.about.com/od/isdivorcethesolution/f/why_women_file_divorce.htm

    http://www.uplifting-love.com/2013/08/80-percent-of-divorces-are-filed-by.html

    Please, be careful in these issues. To some of us, our faith is on the line over the pastoral practices, long in play, in the Catholic Church. Although I remain faithful to our vows, my disaffection from the Catholic Church, specifically over its pastoral and annulment practices, is so acute that I no longer participate in the sacraments.

    [That’s not a good choice. I’d get yourself back to the sacraments, and soon!]

  47. benedictgal says:

    Whatever happened to St. Peter’s exhortation about “obeying God, rather than man?”. It seems to me that a fair question to pose to Cardinal Maradraiga would be, as Fr. Z once asked, “And just how are things in Tegucigalpa?”

    If he wants a fight, I think that Cardinals Muller and Sarah are more than up to it.

  48. benedictgal says:

    Gracie, you are correct.

    Now, I have a personal example of this. My late paternal grandmother divorced my grandfather (for reasons unknown to me to this day-she died and took them with her). She was involved in an invalid marriage for the better part of 40 years. Needless to say, she NEVER stopped going to Mass, nor did it even occur to her that she had a PERCEIVED RIGHT to receive Holy Communion.

    She was the one who instilled in me a deep respect for the liturgy, especially Triduum. Just because she could not receive Holy Communion, that did not abrogate her responsibility to go to Mass nor to rear my father and my aunt (his half-sister) in the Faith. My grandma and my step-grandfather showed up for every sacramental moment of my life (Baptism, First Holy Communion and Confirmation).

    For my eighth grade graduation Mass, I was more than surprised and shocked to see her receiving Holy Communion, along with my step-grandfather. It was afterwards that I learned that she had obtained an annulment and had her marriage blessed by the Church.

    Throughout all of this, my grandma held to the Church. She did not demand anything from the Church because she understood her situation.

    Is Cardinal Maradraiga saying that my grandmother and others like her were wrong? Is he saying that Catherine of Aragon was in error?

    If even my beloved grandmother, who knew the gravity of her actions, did not want to heap sin upon sin, what does that say about the situation? By the way, she never complained. She still had her regimen of daily prayer (Rosary, Stations of the Cross).

    Were she alive today, she would be like the Queen of the South rising up against this generation and condemning it for its failure to adhere to Christ and His Church’s teachings on marriage.

  49. Benedict Joseph says:

    Benedictgal, you are right to hold up your randmother and step-grandfather for their humility and fortitude. It is stunning, especially when you compare it to the hubris exhibited by all too many ecclesiastics who sow rebellion and heresy without an iota of shame. In these days since the Synod I have often thought of those who presently refrain from Communion due to personal sin, yet still go to mass every week. Those who are in more complex situations, such as irregular marriages, and those dealing with same sex attraction. Then, those living today who have by Grace conformed to the Magisterium and lived a kind of martyrdom – participating in the sufferings of Christ for the redemption of us all. Think of all those who have been crowned with physical martyrdom through the centuries since the protestant revolt in England and Ireland – even Germany, upholding the Magisterium. Good bishops, are all these souls to be regarded as fools when you next assume your chairs? Theology is indeed an occupation of the knees, not of the seat of the pants. And Cardinal Kasper does not exemplify that maxim, no matter who says he does.

  50. mysticalrose says:

    “Why does the Synod never talk about the heroic lives many of these women are living as they work to keep their vows?”

    Because they don’t care.

    Nor do they care about the children who are harmed by abandonment and “creative” family arrangements that, at least according to the Synod, have “value.”

  51. Lavrans says:

    @aquinasadmirer: Holy Family in St. Louis Park is a great parish and school too. My point is that both St. Agnes and Holy Family seek to become the new norm. They do not want to remain on the periphery. They want to become mainstream without changing who they are. In other words, evangelizing and spreading the word that what they do is what should be done. A “circle the wagons” mentality of keeping the wonderful lamp that both parishes have under a basket is not going to work and is really the opposite of what they should be doing. It is my hope that both parishes become beacons to the rest of the Archdiocese. The former-peripheries become the mainstream.

  52. aquinasadmirer says:

    @Lavrans,

    It seems we agree that these parishes are currently on the periphery (in a very real sense). It is true that they seek to be examples to be followed, and not to become fortified bunkers. My question is: “Does the episcopate et al see parishes like these in the same light?” I, myself, am not very sanguine about it. Yes, there are exceptional individuals in leadership, but they are, by definition, exceptions.

    When Pope Francis exhorts people to “go out to the peripheries” is it possible that he’s talking about this periphery we’ve been discussing? Dunno.

  53. SimonDodd says:

    Opus conservatorum est defensio collis usque progressio apprehenderit eum—deindeque recedere, et praemnire collem proximum. Magis labor Promethei, non Sysiphi! Sed sumus soli advocati avorum nostrorum, defensores finales causarum morientis.

  54. Lavrans says:

    @aquinasadmirer: Yes. I would say that the Archbishop does indeed share this view, given the priest shuffle recently. More will follow, with priests currently serving at these good parishes likely going to “seed” other, larger parishes that are weaker in Catholic identity. He will likely “tolerate” the old guard and wait them out. Like it or not, that seems to be the case. But I am hopeful, given the last shuffle, that he is seeking to change the Archdiocese one priest and one parish at a time, and St. Agnes and Holy Family are the key. The peripheries will become mainstream through them.

  55. Imrahil says:

    Dear Justalurkingfool…

    I’m sorry to say so, but let’s be fair even to the Church.

    From how you described your situation (deserving of pity, to be sure) in previous comments, the thing is clear that – though tribunals could be, perhaps, quicker – in the end the Church gave to you what was in her power to give.

    The Church’s mission is not applying force to set things right, and there’s a limit to what even force could do about making a wife return to a husband, in any case.

    What the Church can do is to say that the marriage bond still holds, and thus make it clear that returning would be the wife’s obligation., That, I recall, she actually did in your case.

    Quite apart from the fact that even if there had been an actual defect in the Church’s institutions’ handling of such problems (which is not impossible; day-to-day administration is not part of the Church’s infallibility), still it wouldn’t be right to stay away from the Sacraments: and not only not right in the “obligation” manner, but also in the “depriving oneself of consolation and pleasure” manner. There is consolation, precisely also for such situations, in the Sacraments.

    Add to that all the affection that I couldn’t express in that somewhat blunt comment, but do mean.