Eleven cardinals speak on marriage and family

Eleven cardinals speak on marriage and family September 5, 2015

Eleven cardinals release a book in advance of the synod on the family. It’s a reply to the so-called “shadow council’s” behind the scenes politickin’ and is a follow up to Remaining in the Truth of Christ.

Bill Doino has a review of Remaining here.

The new book will be out September 25 from Ignatius.

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  • Bob

    I’m no expert, but my knee jerk reaction is that this is shooting dirty pool and I feel that Ignatius press is doing a disservice to publishing and promoting the kind of rhetoric that frankly belongs on The Remnant and Rorate Caeli.

    In my reading, it is the so called Kasper camp who are keeping their heads low and communicating theologically and pastorally.

    It’s the other camp that is acting like a political bloc. Which is strange, because they are the ones crying politics.

    I say this not as someone who has a hardcore notion of what the way forward is–I am not a cleric. I do not sit in on these Synod meetings. I do not witness the motion of the Holy Spirit vis-a-vis the pastoral manifestation of Church doctrine. I will say, though, that this book gives me a bad feeling.

    • rmichael

      Erm, regardless of your “bad feeling” it is customary in what remains of civilization to wait until a book is released before attributing motives to the author. If the contents uphold the traditional teaching of the Faith, then glory be to God- This may be a startling to many but that is what Bishops are called to do.

      Dirty pool is played in private committees and closed meetings, not in the public square and in the light of day.

      • Bob

        I suppose you are right to refute my sloppy and worried tone. But those Cardinals have made sure that their positions and thoughts vis-a-vis the synod are no secret. Knowing what the second book of this dialogue will argue is no harder than surmising what genre the next movie of the Fast and Furious franchise will be.

        I surely share your worry about our culture, but I’m just worried that one side of a debate is laying the groundwork for schismatics to separate themselves from the Mother Church.

        Not everything that upholds the traditional teaching of the faith is appropriate in every context.

        There is a spectrum in Eucharistic theology–in The Joy of the Gospel the Pope mentions how, “the Eucharist…is not a
        prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the

        The Pope is surely not advocating for open communion, but for a wider participation in the feast of Christ’s Body and Blood.

        I am worried by the implication of your reply that one side is arguing the orthodox position and one side is arguing a heterodox position at this synod.

        What if the so-called Kasperites prevail? Do you suppose that the synod will have erred in a way that inches toward heresy? What should then the reaction of the faithful be?

        Or is this Synod simply a debate on what good pastoral practice is in light of the irrefutable doctrine?

        I view it as the latter. Viewing it as not would surely be a manifestation of a rupture-based interpretation of Church governance.

        • Stu

          Even before taking a medicine, one quite often has to prepare the body to receive it lest it cause further illness.

        • “Not everything that upholds the traditional teaching of the faith is appropriate in every context.”

          Yes it is. Upholding Church teaching is never wrong.

    • iamlucky13

      “I’m no expert, but my knee jerk reaction is that this is shooting dirty
      pool and I feel that Ignatius press is doing a disservice to publishing
      and promoting the kind of rhetoric that frankly belongs on The Remnant
      and Rorate Caeli.”

      This is utterly ridiculous. You’re trying to argue that for a group of Cardinals to cooperatively write a book publicly laying out the teachings of the Church and the reasoning behind them in the context of an ongoing debate is rhetoric, much less comparable to questioning the authority of or fidelity and respect for a major Church council and several recent popes?

      Public commentary, subject to rebuttal if such is actually possible, is very different from Cardinal Marx’s (an ally of Cardinal Kasper) secret conference in Rome in May, from which the participants so far seemed to have declined the opportunity to deny the rumors of decidedly unorthodox discussions taking place. It’s also very different from the postal theft of the “Remaining in the Truth of Christ” during the Synod last year, which violated the international treaty of the Universal Postal Union, not to mention the 7th Commandment. Although I haven’t read it myself, I’ve yet to hear any legitimate criticisms about the content of that “Five Cardinals book,” so I’m far from concerned about the heretical or schismatic content in this “11 Cardinals book,” but if it appears, I expect it to be properly rebutted.

      Speaking of “schismatics,” it was Cardinal Marx who said the Synod “cannot prescribe in detail what we have to do in Germany” followed by “We are not just a subsidiary of Rome.”

      • Bob

        We agree more than it seems based on this dialogue. I do not aim to be an apologist for the Kasperite side. I do not want a diluted gospel and while I enjoy some of the writings of Kasper and Kung et al, (esp. Kung’s On Being Christian and Kasper’s Jesus the Christ) my heart is elsewhere. At their most unfocused, they are the beige colored, decadent endgame for European Christianity.

        I do not think there is anything heterodox in the books by the Cardinals. My only worry is that they are treating an impasse politically rather than spiritually, and that people who agree with that ecclesiology will go SSPX if the Synod goes a certain way.

        I suppose the insoluble question here is whether the issue is an issue of ecclesiology or theology. It seems that one side sees it as the former and the other the latter. I’m in between and very thankful I’m just a lay person far away with no soap box to stand on and no one to influence.

        But can we agree that the Synod should be guided by the Holy Spirit and that both sides should be doing far more praying and far less grandstanding? (I condemn also myself. I will go pray for the Synod a bit. Pray for me too, y’all. I’ll do likewise despite the fact that you all seem a bit calmer and more together than I am.)

  • Dan Berger

    Did anyone else read that as “elven” cardinals? It brought an interesting image to mind.