Ratzinger’s Answer to the Kasper Question


This post first appeared on the Catholic Herald website.

The recent relatio at the end of the family synod was, it was hoped, going to provide some resolution to the vigorous debate on the best means of pastorally accompanying couples who are divorced and civilly remarried, and specifically address the so-called Kasper proposal of admitting them, on a case-by-case basis, to Communion.

The space to manoeuvre between the concepts of doctrine and pastoral practice was hotly contested, with some suggesting that the decision about whether or not to receive Communion was a matter for the individual consciences of divorced and remarried couples.

The final wording of the synod document famously said nothing at all about Communion or access to the sacraments for people in these situations. And by saying nothing, the debate rages on until, one hopes, Pope Francis issues his own, definitive, take on the matter. The synod…

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