Statement of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy in response to the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia

shapeimage_4The priests and deacons of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy in England and Wales affirm with the Holy Father, in his Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, the unchanging teaching of Christ and His Church regarding marriage, the family, and human sexuality.  They renew their pledge to continue to follow the teaching and example of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd, who acts with great clemency towards sinners, but also with pastoral clarity: ‘Go and sin no more’. (John 8:11)

 Our members are heartened that the Exhortation calls for a return to the wisdom of Humanae Vitae (82), defence of the ‘inalienable rights’ of the unborn child (83), re-affirmation of the role of parents as the primary educators of their children (84), and warning of an encroaching ‘gender ideology’ (56).  In response to the Holy Father’s call, the Confraternity’s members particularly pledge themselves to work for better and more profound marriage preparation and accompaniment, and clearer, unashamed and more positive articulation of the good news of the joy of human love.

At a time when moral relativism has caused such confusion, the Confraternity recognises the need to work with pastoral sensitivity, guided by the consistent principles of Scripture and Tradition, and will help its members to discern wisely how to help individuals hurt by the crisis in marriage and family life of which the Holy Father speaks.  Those in irregular unions are a particular focus of pastoral concern, and need to be brought closer to Christ and his Church.  Confraternity clergy will continue to encourage those in problematic marital circumstances to move forward, by personal discernment in the light of the Gospel, and to deepen their involvement in the life of the Church, without losing sight of the fact that certain situations constitute objective and public states of sin.  The Church’s pastors must never neglect the call to repentance, and the need to avoid scandal which would cause the weak to fall, while accompanying their people with kindness and understanding.

About the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy:

In response to Pope Benedict XVI’s ‘Year for Priests’, and on the Memoria of St Paul of the Cross* (19th October 2010), Priests of various southern dioceses, with the good wishes and encouragement of others from elsewhere in Britain, voted unanimously to found the British Province of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy for the sanctification and support of Priests, and in promotion of authentic Priestly life, holiness and mission by Fidelity, Formation and Fraternity.

* St Paul of the Cross prayed for the conversion of England and founded the Passionists, whose Blessed Dominic Barbari greatly influenced Blessed John Henry Newman, and Received him into the Church. The British Province of the Confraternity was founded in direct response to Pope Benedict’s ‘Year for Priests’, his State Visit to Britain, and his Beatification of Blessed John Henry Newman.

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4 Responses to Statement of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy in response to the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia

  1. The Confraternity of Catholic Clergy in England and Wales can affirm “the unchanging teaching of Christ and His Church regarding marriage, the family, and human sexuality.” However, nothing will change the fact that Amoris Laetitia is, as an earlier posting on this blog expressed it “Walter Kasper’s dream come true”.

  2. mmvc says:

    Robert, I find the Confraternity’s statement reassuring and I thank God for its priests and indeed for all priests who are determined not to depart in any way from Christ’s teachings in their pastoral care. As for Cardinal Kasper and his followers, those priests who dissent from Catholic doctrine in their ministry, they need our prayers more than ever!

  3. geoffkiernan says:

    “As for Cardinal Kasper and his followers, those Priests who dissent from Catholic doctrine in their ministry, they need our prayers more than ever”
    True…., but they go in with their eyes wide open. I have more concern for those many, many leaderless sheep who are led astray by them and whose salvation is equally at stake.

  4. kathleen says:

    As I see it: those faithful priests of the Confraternity are going to have a tough time implementing “Catholic doctrine in their ministry” from now on among the more liberal members of their parishes and to all those who wish, by hook or by crook, to justify their illicit relationships, whilst ignoring 2000 years of Catholic teaching!

    Brandishing this Post Synodal Apostolic Exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, in one hand, while pointing to certain of its weak and ambiguous statements in another, we can well imagine any number of angry dissenters demanding they receive Holy Communion, and protesting Father’s refusal to condone their adultery or administer absolution to them…. (unless they repent and turn from their sins.)

    E.g.: “Hey, Father So-and-so… how can you say I’m living an adulterous lifestyle with spouse number two (or three or four…) ? Look here – Pope Francis says you are not to use the confessional as a “torture chamber”! For after all, I am only demonstrating a little bit of human “weakness” – nothing more – aren’t I? I’m “discerning” the situation – I really am! As the Pope says right here in black and white in AL, if I was unable to s***g my (so-called) ‘spouse’, I might be unable to contain myself and have to look elsewhere for a bit of sexual satisfaction. Now that would be rather naughty, wouldn’t it? Far worse. So please, kindly show me some “mercy” and luuurv… and a bit more respect for my (ahem) conscience too while you’re about it. Oh yes – and a little less of all that “mortal sin”, “Hell”, “eternal-punishment-for-unrepentant-sin” sort of talk that is soooooo outdated. Besides, Pope Francis says that nobody is condemned “forever”! Does that mean Jesus was wrong, then?”

    Seriously though, what will a good priest do from now on when he is confronted with someone quoting from AL to try to justify his adultery, or whatever type of sinful lifestyle his “weakness” has lead him into? What can he say in response unless he admits that this document is clearly flawed in parts, and thus allows a dangerous opening of the door to “the smoke of Satan”?

    Yes, that sulfurous “smoke”… all over again!

    St Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle….

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