Father Antonio Spadaro has written for CNN and released yesterday something that seems to answer or does it, the meaning of the pope's exhortation to clear up any confusion caused by the four cardinals..
In the meantime, a high Vatican official, Dean of the Roman Rota, declares that the four dissenting Cardinals could have their cardinal status stripped by Pope Francis, who has the authority to do so, as Supreme Pontiff. It would seem odd that the Holy Father would do this just having concluded the year of Mercy. But who knows. He has the authority!
You can read Fr. Z's take on it:
And here is Fr. Antonio Spadaro's clear and concise answer to the Pope's critics or is it?
Fr. Antonio Spadaro: An open and interesting debate
I think that Amoris Laetitia has created an open and interesting debate within the Catholic Church thanks to Francis, a Pope who never blocks dialogue, if it is loyal and motivated by the good of the Church.
The case, however, of those who use criticism for other purposes or ask questions in order to create difficulty and division, would be different, of course.
The interesting questions of the four cardinals, in reality, were already raised during the Synod, where the dialogue was deep, extensive and most of all, frank. Amoris Laetitia is only the mature fruit of Francis' reflection after listening to everyone and reading the Synod's final document.
It is the result of a Synod and not just a personal idea of the Pontiff, as some might think.
During the Synod, all of the necessary responses were given and more than once. Since then, many other pastors, among them many bishops and cardinals, carried on and deepened the discussion, including recently.
The Pope even indicated Cardinal Schönborn as a faithful interpreter of the document.
Thus I believe that a doubtful conscience can easily find all of the answers it seeks, if it seeks them with sincerity.
In this case, however, as in others, everything which touches the lives of people should not be resolved in the abstract, but must be dealt with -- as the four cardinals themselves affirmed -- continuing, "the reflection and the discussion, calmly and with respect."