As I mentioned in an earlier post, since I have been on pilgrimage, I’ve tried to be in as much of a Synod Free Zone as possible.
However, I am gifted with some pretty good sources who are following everything closely.
I’ve been brought up to date.
I will hereunder share an edited version of something I got via email. It is reliable. For now I will leave him in the safe shadows of anonymity but hereby send public thanks for his work.
Yesterday, Cardinal George Pell commented on the final document of the Synod on the Family at the general assembly of the Una Voce Federation that was also taking place in Rome. Pell said, that the Synod was „very hard work“.
The final document contained 94 paragraphs. Most of them were not controversial. The paragraphs 84, 85 and 86 had substantial minorities opposing them:
84: 187 yes and 72 no.
85: 178 yes and 80 no.
86: 190 yes and 64 no.
According to Pell a minority of bishops objected because they thought that the true teaching was not taught explicitly enough. He excused the Synod fathers with the argument that they – although they happen to be bishops – “have never done any or much Thomistic philosophy”.
Pell saw a danger in the paragraph about conscience because people could use “conscience” and then “do what they want”. But the paragraph about conscience was rewritten in the last days: “You need to study it, but it is basically good.”
According to Pell, the Synod did not focus at all on the three topics Communion for the divorced and remarried, on the idea of conscience or on the acceptance of homosexuality: “Catholic doctrine is stated clearly.”
Pell admits that the language is “different” and verbose. It is not a document that he would have written: “Some people will say it is terrible, but it is not terrible.” For him the final version is almost a miracle if compared with the draft: “The Synod itself is much, much better than the worst we have feared.”
“There is nothing there endorsing Communion for the divorced and remarried. There is nothing there endorsing a penitential process. There is nothing there that is saying homosexual activity is justified.”
Pell does not know, how the text will be explained or spined. He is sure, that there will be attempts to “make something out of it.”
He explains that according to the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, “there is no doctrinal error in anything that has been published”.