Wednesday, December 10, 2014


 This is what the Holy Father said today at the Wednesday Morning audience in St. Peter's Square:

(Vatican Radio) Following a series of reflections concentrating on the Church, Pope Francis at his weekly General Audience in St Peter's Square on Wednesday opened a new Chapter, a weekly catechesis focusing on the Family.
He began this new cycle by recalling the Extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family which took place in October.
Listen to Lydia O'Kane's report

The Holy Father told the thousands of faithful present that he wanted to share with them what took place and what the Synod has produced.

He continued saying, that during this time there was much media attention on the work being done at the Synod and for that the Pope expressed his thanks. But, Pope Francis added,  often the vision of the media was a bit 'in the style of sports or political coverage,: “they often spoke of two teams, pro and con, conservatives and liberals, and so on.”

The Pope explained that, first of all he asked the Synod Fathers to speak frankly and courageously and to listen with humility.

He also stressed there was no prior censorship and that everyone had the chance to say what was in his heart.

The meeting, said the Holy Father began with a very frank discussion of the serious pastoral challenges affecting the Family, in the light of the fundamental truths about the sacrament of Matrimony – its indissolubility, unity, fidelity and openness to life. 

The fruits of this period of discussion and discernment were collected in a preliminary report, which was then discussed in smaller groups, he said. 

The observations and suggestions which emerged were incorporated in a Final Report, which served as the basis for the Final Message of the Synod Fathers.  The Pope went on to say that the Final Report is being sent to the Bishops throughout the world, and the results of this consultation will be brought to the Synod meeting next October.

The Holy Father also mentioned the fact that in preparation for the General Synod of Bishops on the Family next year the Synod Secretariat on Tuesday announced the publication of its preparatory document, known as the ‘Lineamenta’.

This, said Pope Francis was the course of the Synod Assembly. “Everything happened "cum Petro et sub Petro," that is, in the presence of the Pope, that is a guarantee of freedom and trust for all, and a guarantee of orthodoxy.”

The synod , concluded Pope Francis, is not a parliament, but a protected space in which the Holy Spirit can work;” there was no clash between factions, but a dialogue between the Bishops, which came after a long process of preparation and now continues, for the good of the family, the Church and society.

 I have been asked, said the Pope, if the Synod Father’s fought? The Holy Father replied, “I don’t know about ‘fought’ but they had strong words. This is freedom, this is just the kind of freedom that there is in the Church.”


Anonymous said...

Answering your question, Yes the pope heard Cardinal Burke and disagreed with him.

Who was the individual who appointed a group of liberal bishops, out of the blue, to write that first horrible document that was written and translated and given to the press before the synod fathers even knew it existed? Francis.

At the end of the synod when the fathers did not approve certain paragraphs who insisted that they be included anyway? Francis.

Pope Francis just gave another interview in which he lamented the fact that divorced and "remarried" Catholics cannot read at Mass, be extra ordinary ministers of communion, act as god parents etc. Again I have to ask what church is Francis talking about? Because in the Catholic Church in America none of those things stops anyone from doing all of those things. Although it should. Someone living in a public state of adultery shouldn't be ble to stand as a godparent because it gives bad example.

There exists a solution to the whole question of divorced Catholics living in adultery. It's called the sacrament of Penance and amendment of life. In other words....stop comitting this sin because it is an offense against God and you will condem yourself to Hell if you don't. Telling people the truth is merciful. Making them believe that their very serious sinful decision is fine with God nd the Church is evil.

And as for the "homosexual questions"...of course those people should be treated with compassion and love as should everybody. But to make statements that there exists something good that can be taught to the Church by immoral unions is evil. And again what church is being mean to homosexuals. It's definitely not the Catholic Church. Let's be honest the majority of today's priests are not exactly examples of a heterosexual male.

"Pastoral" practices which in effect contradict Church teaching is an immature, passive agressive attempt to rationalize disobedience to Christ Himself. And that is evil. God help the Church.

Ed Sprinkle said...

With no desire to contradict His Holiness, this story begs far more questions than it answers. No matter what the pope says now, one cannot dismiss the consistory meeting in which Cardinal Kasper presented his anti-marriage "mercy" proposals, only to be followed by the pope himself, praising the Cardinal's "serene theology."

One hates to be cynical, but it's very hard not to draw the comparison to Obama when, as a candidate, he constantly spoke out against political divisions and insisted that he was a "post partisan" candidate. This same "post partisan" went on to govern one of the most divisive regimes in U.S. history and forced the passage of probably the most divisive and controversial pieces of legislation in our history without one vote from the other political party.

I am sorry, but I am very wary of leaders who try too hard to give the impression that there are no divisions or to minimize their differences.

Anonymous said...

Without one vote from the other party.... And this is because the President is the divisive one?

Get real, Ed. Both parties share the blame for our divided government.

Anonymous said...

"The fruits of this period of discussion and discernment were collected in a preliminary report"

How to parse this as an accurate statement???

Given the timing and complexity of the preparation and distribution of the so-called "preliminary report" in multiple languages, does it not appear to already have been written prior to the bishops first-week "period of discussion"?

Ed Sprinkle said...

I did not use the example of the AHA legislation to start a partisan debate on this blog. My only point is that we have a political leader who is transparently partisan and divisive on a number of fronts--that particular legislation was just the immediate example that came to mind. And like the president, the pope at least appears to take the "I'm above the fray, let's take the high road" position, while in fact, having a very one-sided position. I'm as disgusted with both political parties as you probably are, but that's not what this discussion is about. Let's save that debate for REAL CLEAR POLITICS.

CPT Tom said...

Is not possible for the Pope to speak plainly? I've heard all about that he's a Jesuit, or he is just shaking things up, etc. He needs to stop. We don't have time or the security to have this kind of Polarizing discussion. Marriage and the Family is settled doctrine. Yes, we need to discuss what to do to SUPPORT (real) marriage, and the family. But we also need to look beyond just the individuals who are living in sin (whether in a second marriage or other sexual situation), we need to be concerned about the people affected by those situations (The first spouse, the children, the family)

He wastes not only political capital, but also the credibility of the Papacy on this rehash of the 70s. We are looking in the face of demographic Armageddon, brought about largely by the Church ignoring the real teachings of the Vatican II Council and the prophetic Humanae Vitae.

Cardinal Kasper and the rest of the Spirit of Vatican II should NOT be listen to, nor are credible considering the collapse of the Church and the cratering of our education. Considering the state of the Church in Germany and Europe, Cardinal Kasper should be the one who should say nothing, not the Cardinals from Africa. The Pope should replace his Council of Eight with more or all Cardinals from Africa and Asia, because they are actually growing. We need decisive and CLEAR action and words. I'm sorry The Pope is still falling short of the mark. St Michael defend us in Battle! Holy Mary Pray for us and The Pope!

Anonymous said...

Ed - "My only point is that we have a political leader who is transparently partisan and divisive on a number of fronts..."

AND we have a Republican opposition that is also transparently partisan and divisive on a number of fronts."

That's my point.

Gene said...

Keep Talking

St. Michael, regarding the Pope
Said, 'The faithful should not give up hope.
Tell them not to worry
There's really no hurry
In giving the guy enough rope…"

Gene said...


We're losing our faith in Christ's Vicar
So, let's bite our tongues and not snicker
We'll patiently wait
'Til he seals his fate
While drowning our fears in good liquor.

Anonymous 2 said...

Comparisons between Pope Francis and President Obama are inapposite for several reasons, not the least of which is the rhetorical ploy of “argument by association.” But here is the main one from my perspective:

There is the narrative of Obama supporters and there is the narrative of Obama opponents. I am not particularly interested in either. I am interested in the facts and will not defer to the competing narratives but will seek out those facts independently. This is my duty as a conscientious citizen.

Now, perhaps there is the pro-Francis/Kasper narrative and the anti-Francis/Burke narrative (or whatever one wants to call them). I am not particularly interested in either. I am interested in the end result and will not defer to the competing narratives but instead to the workings of the Holy Spirit. This is my duty as a conscientious Catholic. ‘Nuff said.

Anonymous said...

Anon, who needs to get real?

Your point was that it is the Republicans that are divisive because they stubbornly refused to provide one vote for trash legislation. You made yourself clear that they are fully responsible by asking your question about the President being unjustly accused of being the divisive one. You should work on understanding your own words. Your original question points the finger at the homophobic, anti-woman, racist, children hating Republicans.

The comparison between Obama and Francis is a good one. They share political beliefs in common and likely share the same “compassionate” heart on many social issues. What will be interesting is how the Pope intends to thread the needle to equivocate 2000 years of accepted doctrinal teaching. Obama has the luxury of not having to deal with that obstacle. Francis ran into that problem in October when the infallible logic of the Catholic Faith ripped to shreds his dream of gay(sad) couples attending Mass together so they can share a kiss at the Sign of Peace without feeling pressure from right wing zealots next to them in the pews. Hard to reconcile the existence of any sin if fornicating sodomites are seen as living in “supportive relationships”. As the saying goes “Capitalism without failure is like religion without sin”. The pope and his band of 8 are going to run into that problem again and the time between now and then should not be wasted on the delusion that Francis is somehow a closet conservative. Instead think about how many people you can get to go to Philly to protest the pope.


Anonymous 2 said...


You have provided another striking example of an anti-Francis narrative. It may move many. I will not let it move me. Instead I hope and trust to the Holy Spirit to move those in authority. I cannot know what Pope Francis is doing, nor I suggest can you or any of us. But with the social media rampant allowing everyone to opine nowadays, I suppose many are tempted to rate the Pope’s “job performance.” Perhaps the Vatican should arrange for parishes to distribute an evaluation form to each active Catholic to make it easier to give feedback and produce a more representative sampling (sarcasm alert).

Ed Sprinkle said...

Again, this blog is NOT the appropriate forum for any of us to go off on some tangent about which political party is to blame for America's problems. Can we stick to Father's post? I personally apologize for making the comparison, since it seems to have caused nothing but distractions.

i challenge all people posting here to stick to the subject.

Gene said...

ED, the blog has always been pretty free ranging, as one subject sometimes leads to another. Just relax and enjoy it without getting all obsessive-compulsive about it.

Gene said...

Anon 2, So, I guess you continue to represent the pro-Francis narrative. You must need practice defending the indefensible.
I think Obama and Francis are both products of the secular/humanist/egalitarian mentality that the Left has succeeded in establishing in our culture. They are almost interchangeable except one is of the darker persuasion (well, maybe a little darker…woodpiles and all that). Both of them are poster children for the Left.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2,

The Holy Spirit doesn't have to move in spite of you but can and should work through you. Don't be a bystander while Christ's Church is under attack. The Anglican Church is on the verge of collapse. Why? For the same reasons Francis seems to want to implement as Supreme Pontiff. I know the Catholic Church will not disappear, but having the true Faith accessible and practiced by a few thousand people is not a desirable state. That condition would fulfill Christ's promise, but I don't want us to end up there.

George said...

I try to stay away as much as I can from bringing up politics on this blog. I would much rather discuss theological or moral issues. Abortion has come up as a topic on this blog and while it is a moral issue, it also has a large political component. It is hard not to get into politics on that one. I'm persistent on that one (I have been) because I want to get others thinking about their position on the issue. I consider the tax payer funding of it to be a preeminent issue, for instance and likewise artificial contraception and embryonic stem cell research. Abortion and contraception are to me the major reasons why the world is in the shape it is today.
If a person holding political office votes in conformance with Church teaching it matters not to me what political party they belong to. Now it is true that a lot of candidates for public office are not going vote 100% on what the Church teaches. That is just reality. One does not have to vote by coin flip however. Do some research before you vote. I have gone to the Catholic Advocate website which rates Catholic members of Congress on their voting record to see how the two parties compare on certain key issues. Many of us reside in areas where the person representing us in Congress is not Catholic. You can still apply the same criteria however.

Anonymous 2 said...


No. I continue to represent the pro-Holy Father narrative. There is a difference you know. Thus I defended Pope Benedict and Pope St. John Paul II against what I viewed as unwarranted attacks/criticism, including, as I recall (but please correct me if I am wrong) by you.

Anonymous 2 said...


I don’t disagree about the Holy Spirit working through you or through me. I am just very cautious when I think the Holy Spirit is moving you or me to tell the Magisterium what to do.

Anonymous 2 said...

P.S. Let me rephrase that last sentence to be clearer: I am just very wary about thinking that the Holy Spirit is moving you or me to tell the Magisterium what to do.

Gene said...

Anon 2, I did not attack Popes Benedict or JP II. They were both devout Popes who led the Church from within a faith stance. JP was not the theologian Benedict was, but he was a good shepherd. Neither man sowed division, doubt, or fear.

Anonymous 2 said...


I stand corrected. What I may have been thinking about is just some minimizing on your part of what Pope Benedict said in a homily about “idols.” I apologize for suggesting anything more.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2,

It's not a matter of telling them what to do, but to be concerned when they strayed from what has been consistently instructed. For example, it is not possible for sodomites to be living in supportive relationships. They are only helping one another to cling to sin and thereby reject salvation. I'm far from being a holy man, but I do know when someone is taking a dump in my soup.


Православный физик said...

The Anon at 7:30 is 100% right...

As Cardinal Muller recently has referred to (I'm paraphrasing) that the separation of praxis from doctrine is heresy.

Say one thing, do another....perhaps that's been the state of some things in the Church for quite a while, a form of hypocrisy so to speak, or intentional ignoring of the law.

For example, the removal of the indult for EM's to purify the sacred vessels back in 2006...(still done in some places), pouring of the precious Blood after the consecration (abrogated with the publication of RS in 2004), the vir for the Mandatum.,,,of course none of these things are Divine Law; however, As the old saying goes, chip at enough bricks, eventually a building will crack....or rather start at these things so that one can eventually disobey Divine Law

There is a similarity between the Occupant in the WH and the present occupant of the see in Rome

There are times when the media does take the Pope out of context, but the Pope's own actions often do not help himself in these matters.

Pray for Pope Francis, Pray for the Church.