Differing declarations on the question of remarried divorcees

Source: FSSPX News


On January 13, the Italian daily La Stampa carried the words of Cardinal Mario Francesco Pompedda, Prefect Emeritus of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signature. “In itself, divorce is not a sin and, in certain cases, it may even be advised in order to resolve problems of a patrimonial or civil nature between the two parties” when a “simple separation cannot resolve everything,” he declared, pointing out that “divorce is not granted by the Church, but that the Code of Canon Law makes provision for procedures of separation of spouses.”

 Concerning the declarations of the Spanish Jesuit Eduardo Lopez Azpitarte in December 2005, in the pastoral theology revue Sal Terrae, Cardinal Pompedda supported the views expressed, affirming: he “is right to say that remarried divorcees are not excommunicated.” As, according to the Roman cardinal, “no canon states that someone who remarries civilly, in spite of a valid religious marriage, must be excommunicated.” “The principle of the indissolubility of the marriage does not prevent the divorce from being considered lawful,” he said. “It is probable that the Ecclesiastic discipline which regulates the declaration of marriage nullity will be made easier and adapted to current circumstances,” announced the cardinal, adding that “many marriages are objectively null” but that this was “difficult to prove.”

 In response to the same wish expressed by Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the Unity of Christians last October, Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family, made it clear that the Bishops Synod on the Eucharist had “left no doubt on the doctrine of the Church” on this subject, “it is not an open-ended question.” And he made it clear: “All of these proposals – as if the door was being left open to the future, creating expectations of a possible change – do not seem to me acceptable.” (see DICI n° 124)