Card. Marx Challenged by Fellow Cardinals Regarding Comments on Same-Sex “Marriage”
Cardinal Reinhard Marx
After ambiguous remarks on the blessing of same-sex couples and a letter praising the work of a German organization that helps women obtain access to abortion, Cardinal Marx has received a rebuke from several cardinals and bishops.
Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Archbishop of Munich and Freising, has been president of the Episcopal Conference of Germany since 2014. On February 3, 2018, for his tenth year at the head of the archdiocese, the prelate granted an interview to the Bavarian press outlet Bayerischer Rundfunk. The article was published under the eye-catching title “It is possible to bless same-sex unions.”
In answer to the journalist Karin Wendlinger who asked whether he could imagine there being a way to bless these “couples”, the prelate answered:
There are no general solutions and I think that would not be right, because we are talking about pastoral care for individual cases, and that applies to other areas as well, which we cannot regulate, where we have no sets of rules...That does not mean that nothing happens, but I really have to leave that to the pastor on the ground, accompanying an individual person with pastoral care.
This dubious language, worthy of the purest form of conciliar clerical doublespeak, carefully avoids mentioning Catholic morality and the Church’s firm condemnation of these unnatural unions. They echo the declarations of Bishop Franz-Josef Bode, second-in-charge of the Episcopal Conference of Germany, who is also in favor of special rites or “particular solutions” that would make it possible to bless this type of union.
While there has been no firm reaction from the Episcopal Conference of Germany, a voice did speak out in the United States. The archbishop of Philadelphia, Charles Chaput, recalled in his diocesan bulletin that “there is no truth, no real mercy, and no authentic compassion in blessing a course of action that leads persons away from God,” adding that it is impossible to “cooperate in a morally forbidden act”.
Cardinal Paul Josef Cordes, president emeritus of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, now 83 years old, declared that the German prelate’s remarks were “frighteningly naïve”, and that he “ignores the clear revelation of God”, and called the idea of these blessings “sacrilegious!”
The Association Donum Vitae and the Refusal of Life
Cardinal Marx also distinguished himself in another field when on January 23, 2018, he sent a letter of encouragement to the ZdK, the Central Committee of German Catholics, to praise the work accomplished by the Donum Vitae centers.
The Donum Vitae association has 116 reception centers and receives about 36,000 women every year. Besides offering counseling for pregnant women, it delivers the famous “counselling certificate” required for an abortion in Germany. In his day, Pope John Paul II formally condemned this practice. In 2006, the Episcopal Conference of Germany forbade Church staff members to work with Donum Vitae.
The archbishop of Cologne, Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki, reacted to this letter. Distancing himself from his fellow cardinal in Munich, the prelate recalled in the press that Donum Vitae is still “outside of the Church” and it is forbidden to have a mission in the diocese and collaborate at the same time with this association.
As for the Italian Vaticanist Marco Tosatti, with his customary ardor, he implored the Holy Father to react to these statements by Cardinal Marx – who also happens to be a member of C9, the restricted council the pope entrusted with reforming the Roman Curia. He asked him to clarify these questions that endanger the salvation of souls, which remains the supreme law of the Church.
Where is Rome in all of this? And let no one say the confusion was caused by the journalists.... The confusion is created by the one who ought to give directions and clarity, and who, at the highest level, having the obligation to speak, remains silent…
Sources: Génèthique / kath.ch / The Tablet / Catholic Herald / Bayerischer Rundfunk / FSSPX.News