Cohabiting couples welcome

From Mahound’s Paradise:

spadaro-marriageAntonio “Sock-Puppet” Spadaro is at it again, this time with a pro-cohabitation tweet.

Actually, in true Spadaro fashion, the tweet is in fact a retweet of his own original tweet. He realized that the first tweet didn’t pick up the evocative photo centered on the “back” of the young women, so he added it on the retweet. I’m not kidding about that.

Take a look at the stream.

Don’t blame me, man. I didn’t even notice it at first. I was looking at the Pope’s welcoming expression.

The picture heads a short article in Spadaro’s CyberTeologia titled (you guessed it), “The welcoming of those young people who prefer to live together without getting married…” The piece seems to classify cohabitation as a sort of potentially benign stepping stone (made all the more pervasive by the uncertainties caused by modern capitalism or whatever):

And this is why he [Pope Francis] asks for the welcoming of those young people who prefer to live together without getting married.

But the Pope has done nothing more than to repeat what the Synod of Bishops 2016 approved with more than an 80% consensus . . . and that is that one realizes that simply cohabiting is often chosen due to a general mentality against definitive commitments, but also because the couple is waiting for existential security (work and a fixed salary).

All these situations must be addressed in a constructive manner, trying to transform them into an opportunity to journey towards the fullness of marriage and family in the light of the Gospel.

Rather, in many circumstances, the decision to live together is a sign of a relationship that needs to be directed to an outlook of stability to which it is important to focus.

In my experience, living together as a sort of stepping stone is how most cohabitating couples view things anyway: “We’re not ready yet.” “We’re going to try it and see what happens.” “He might get transferred.” And so on. Very few couples, again in my experience, would brand cohabitation itself as a permanent arrangement.

So, Spadaro’s novel interpretation of Church teaching appears to be nothing more than the outlook of the average indecisive twenty-seven year-old.

But of course, it’s not simply Spadaro’s novel interpretation, but that of Pope Francis. Spadaro’s article was no doubt written at the direction or blessing of the Pope, and is taken from an address that the Pope gave to priests on the “new matrimonial process” just the day before:

“At the same time, be neighbours in the style proper to the Gospel, in encounter and welcome, to those young people who prefer to cohabit without getting married”, he said, “because on a spiritual and moral level they are among the poorest and the least, for whom the Church, following in the footsteps of her Master and Lord, wishes to be a mother who does not abandon them, but rather who approaches and cares for them. Christ also loves these people with all His heart. Look upon them with tenderness and compassion. This care for the least, precisely because it emanates from the Gospel, is an essential part of your task of promoting and defending the sacrament of marriage”.

Sorry, I meant to give you the more illuminating shortened version:

welcom(ing) those young people who prefer to cohabit without getting married . . . is an essential part of your task of promoting and defending the sacrament of marriage”.

As to whether Francis/Spadaro believes that cohabitating couples should take communion: based on that photo and the texts, what do you think?

There’s a hidden irony here. The photo above is not a recent one. It was taken in the first year of the Pope’s pontificate at a “Valentine’s Day” audience with “20,000 engaged couples” in St. Peter’s Square.

In other words, the unidentified young woman whose un-jacket-covered bum Antonio Spadaro saw fit to appropriate for his religious magazine was not “living together without getting married,” but was instead engaged to the young man holding her hand.

Spadaro wrote a book on cyberethics.

Let me end on an obvious but serious point. The Church has always believed that premarital sex is a grave sin. The proper response to grave sin is not “maybe it will develop into something else” but “stop.”

The Pope clearly does not believe the Church’s teaching. He doesn’t want that couple to believe it. He doesn’t want you to believe it.

Either he’s wrong and this is therefore another example of why he either isn’t or shouldn’t be Pope. Or else, on this subject, what the Church has taught for the last 2,000 years, going all the way back to the words of our Lord, is a lie.

Which do you think it is?

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29 Responses to Cohabiting couples welcome

  1. Scoop says:

    Well the answers are never binary, no?

    Therefore there is another FrancisAnswer to these questions. The Pope believes in the Church teachings as long as it is him who is doing the teaching and the Church is not a lying but it was just a-kiddin’.

  2. Joe says:

    You might gain a very different impression of Pope Francis’ remarks if you read the FULL original text, rather than relying on indirect sources. The selective quote of his last paragraph mis-represents the whole.

  3. toadspittle says:

    “….the unidentified young woman whose un-jacket-covered bum…”
    Who is more fixated with the young woman’s “bum”? The “sock-puppet” or the writer?

    Yes, Mr. (or Mrs.) writer – people do have “God-given” bums. Even you, if you took a look.
    But I suppose you think the sight is “impure,” or whatever.
    Get a life.

  4. mmvc says:

    Straight to the heart of the periphery, Toad, eh? No matter that the content of the tweet was scandalous and that such an image was used inappropriately by PF’s tweeting priest buddy, it’s all about bums! Well, just as plunging necklines or micro-skirts would be out of place when being received by heads of state, royalty and especially religious leaders such as the pope, so spray-on/skinny/tight-fit jeans or indeed any type of immodest clothing is unsuitable for such occasions. Stands to reason, I would have thought.

  5. mmvc says:

    Joe @ 08:05
    Last year the pope said: “I’ve seen a lot of fidelity in these cohabitations, and I am sure that this is a real marriage, they have the grace of a real marriage because of their fidelity.”

    This time round he emphasised the need to welcome cohabiting couples and to be there for them in their spiritual and moral need which is all well and good. The problem is that there is no hint at the even greater need to point out their grave sin and call them to conversion and repentance.

    Our Lord welcomed and engaged with the Samaritan woman at the well but He also admonished her to go, and sin no more.

  6. Which do I think it is? Well, I’m a very binary person, rigid, black or white, so I’ll choose: “He either isn’t or shouldn’t be Pope.” And I’ll pray: “Dear God, please enlighten Bergoglio so that he can correct the errors he’s been teaching. Bring him back from the gates of hell.”

  7. kathleen says:

    Well said mmvc (Maryla)! That is the whole problem in a nutshell. Pope Francis has completely twisted the very meaning of MERCY as taught by Our Loving Saviour and the Holy Catholic Church.

    He puffs himself up as The Merciful Pope as though none of his predecessors had ever spoken on this ancient virtue. Yet he totally ignores Our Lord’s call to the hardened sinner towards a change of heart, to conversion, to repentance, as an absolute requisite prior to receiving Christ’s abundant, loving mercy! What Francis is preaching is not “mercy” – quite the contrary – he is condoning those living in sinful situations. Frankly speaking, he appears to be saying: “Carry on sinning and don’t worry; God is soooo merciful, He’ll forgive you anyway”(!!!)

    This is the twisted teaching of Luther. It’s not Catholic. And it’s a terrible, wicked lie! Flaunting the Divine Law and the Church’s clear teachings on Morality is leading souls astray!

    Didn’t I hear somewhere that the Pope was supposed to be the Prime Guardian of the Sacred Deposit of Faith? Not Francis! He’s tossing it all out to make a church in his own Marxist image. Or so it would seem!
    We have enough evidence before us now to say with certainty that Francis promotes heretical teaching.

    Our one great consolation we have to fall back on is precisely a Vatican 1 teaching that no “Pope Francises” can ever change! The infallibility of the Pope refers ONLY when he speaks ex cathedra.* IOW, if he spouts what we KNOW to be heretical or gobbledegook, we can safely ignore him, and turn to the solid eternal teaching of Christ’s Holy Bride.

    (* Edit: I have our longtime Australian contributor, Crow, to thank for the perceptive wisdom in that last paragraph through an email exchange with her.)

  8. johnhenrycn says:

    Happy to say that I do not own even one book or pamphlet written by Pope Francis, or even one ghost-written for him (which seems more likely). I’m sure Jack Keyhoe’s shelves literally groan under the weight of tomes by PF, Kasper, Küng, Burgess, Greeley and other sundry novelists.

  9. GC says:

    He puffs himself up as The Merciful Pope as though none of his predecessors had ever spoken on this ancient virtue.

    kathleen, this reminds me of what I have being sensing for quite some time now – that the Bishop of Rome is something of a “straw-man-oriented” Bishop of Rome. (Now I bet you’ve never seen that expression before, have you?)

    I mean that he and his chums artificially attribute all kinds of false positions and views, or very much implied ones, to those who heed and support the traditional teachings of the Church. Then he tells us what blaggards we all are. Who was it that was keeping a list of all the disparaging terms he uses against traditional and conservative Catholics? Was it our friend Lawrence England?

    Take the above, for example. He (or Reverendo Spadaro) seems to be saying that Catholics with traditional views on cohabitation just want to burn such couples at the stake, more or less, or lock them away in one of the dungeons of the Holy Inquisition, at the very least. But I am quite confident that we in the traditional mold know of people quite close to us that have shacked up and we do somehow realise that they are still very much loved by God and that they have in them the potential to live married life as God has designed it. We very much hope they will move to marriage and they are often the subject of our prayers. But Spadaro, dishonestly I feel, seems to be saying the opposite about us. That we are singularly unmerciful and probably have shares in a global stake-producing group of companies.

    But really, the main difference between us and him (and co.) is that we stress the importance of Christian marriage; whereas for Spadaro and his patrons it seems to be that marriage might be kinda of nice for these couples, well maybe one day, perhaps, in the end, sorta. As I said, earlier, these things are all straw men, which was immediately apparent to me at the time of this Synod thing. Does anyone else feel the same way?

    kathleen, Crow set us a quiet challenge a little while ago – at least I took it as a challenge. Although she lives in Sydney she suggested she did not grow up there and that nobody probably could guess where she did. My guess is in the southern New South Wales diocese of . . . . WAGGA WAGGA!!! If I’m right I will explain the reasons for my guess later.

  10. toadspittle says:

    “…so spray-on/skinny/tight-fit jeans or indeed any type of immodest clothing is unsuitable for such occasions. “

    We clearly have different concepts of “Immodest,” Mmvc.
    In the eye of the beholder, no doubt.
    I can only hope the Pope was not shocked, shocked. Let us pray not .
    I must say I’m finding Francis, and the howls and groans of execration he invariably provokes from “the Faithful,” highly stimulating. What in heaven’s name will he get up to next?
    …Not unlike the saintly and Christian President Trump, really

  11. J.P. says:

    Moderator. Why do you allow johnhenrycn@14:07 to continue his habitual sniping at me here in a blog in which I have made no contribution and have no interest ? He displays his ignorance by again corrupting the spelling of my name and makes unwarranted assumptions about my having books by five named authors when I fact I have none such.
    Kindly post this, if you are impartial.

  12. johnhenrycn says:

    “Spadaro”
    Recorded in many spellings, this surname means swordsman – in either the militaristic or libertine sense. Given his fascination with these people’s back 40s (or 40’s if you insist), I’m inclined to guess the latter. Maybe our resident multi-linguist, Jack Kehoe can assist?

  13. kathleen says:

    @ GC

    No, I didn’t know what the expression, a straw-man-oriented” Bishop of Rome could mean! I was fascinated; but thanks for the explanation lower down 😉. Very insightful!

    Yes, it was Bones (Lawrence England) who compiled “The Pope Francis Little Book of Insults” aimed at us pesky “rigid” traditionalists that keep getting in the way of Francis’ ecumaniacal plans. The “little” book is growing fast too with constant new additions; it might end up being a “big” book one day – ho-hum!

    “But I am quite confident that we in the traditional mold know of people quite close to us that have shacked up and we do somehow realise that they are still very much loved by God and that they have in them the potential to live married life in the light of the Gospel as God desires. We very much hope they will move to marriage and they are often the subject of our prayers.”

    So true. We are not immune to these difficult situations among our own families, friends, etc. But Spadero and ilk are unable to distinguish between the sin and the sinner. We have a duty and responsibility to speak the Truth with charity if and when the circumstances are right – that is what real mercy is all about – and of course to pray hard for them. We are not shunning our loved ones or lauding it over them (for “there but for the grace of God go I”) but truly loving them and desperately wanting them to save their souls.
    Spadero & co., who should know better, close their minds to this beautiful Gospel Truth.

  14. johnhenrycn says:

    Actually, Mr Kehoe, you’re the one who’s corrupting your own precious name by engaging in sock-puppetry [J.P.] Furthermore, my “Keyhoe” misspelling was unintentional on this occasion. And furthermore, “Jack” is an affectionate nickname for “John”. And furthermore, it’s obvious to anyone who frequents CP&S that you – like most of us – are thrilled to be mentioned in dispatches.

  15. johnhenrycn says:

    A beautiful song for my frenemy, John Kehoe:

  16. johnhenrycn says:

    And another one:

  17. johnhenrycn says:

    So sad. That was the best version I ever had of that Dublin saunter. I begged O’Brien’s daughter to send me the ’45 vinyl version, but she never did. Anyroad, frenemy, here’s another one – not quite as good as the other one which was a live performance by that sweet man:

  18. johnhenrycn says:

    Yes, John, I know your tastes probably run more in the direction of When Irish Eyes Are Smiling. Molly Malone,Town of Ballybay, Danny Boy,Tipperary and such like, but before I go, one last one from my favorite 8 track tape:

  19. mmvc says:

    Sorry to disrupt the musical flow ;o), but fyi here’s a commentary on ‘nanny church’ and cohabitation:

    http://studiomatters.com/cohabitation-mother-church

  20. toadspittle says:

    How amazing to see actual motor cars on the streets of Dublin in 1962.
    And how sad. Why no asses?

    “But Spadero and ilk are unable to distinguish between the sin and the sinner. “
    But, thank God, we are not like him
    And we can. Right.

  21. GC says:

    That calls for another musical interlude, and one more to the point here – committing to marriage, as is natural – God’s design.

    With something to interest North Americans too, perhaps. This pretty young maid (words).

    It says “traditional Irish”, but I have my doubts. Plastic paddies?

  22. toadspittle says:

    Most of what counts for “Irish” in the States, is “plastic,” GC. They prefer it that way.

    …Utter gibberish.

  23. GC says:

    I thought that was a Bing Crosby song, Toad? Our friend, Mr John Kehoe, pointed out to us previously the “Hollywood” or “Broadway” Irish kind of thing, as you also suggest.

    Here’s something less plastic, we hope. Although it was a commercial success. Even I bought the cassette in the 80s (sic!). O woman of the house (= “wife”?), what ails you? (Erse words) With the husband’s (?) pleas to the French and Spanish to invade asap, please. (The Duke of York referred to is probably the dethroned Catholic King James II?). No wonder the Brits were so strick with our Irish friends previously.

    Very troublesome spelling to us non-Irish. What more for our Finno-Swedo-Canadian friends?

    Still, I think the family/marriage thing may also come through here a bit, as is our topic.

    (Rise up ye stalwart men
    And put the pitch alight on your torch sticks
    Vanquish those who would do us evil
    And establish the rule of France
    Oh woman of the house, what ails you?

    REFRAIN:
    Woman of the house, we say it again
    From this year out the land will be rent free
    And what ails you?

    Here’s a jug on the table and beer is coming
    And the Duke of York has sufficient arms
    The French and the Spaniards at the shore’s edge
    And how better that is than woman’s chatter
    And oh woman of the house, what ails you?

    REFRAIN

    Alas and alack when I was young
    Two years old with no evil thought in my mind
    That I didn’t join the King’s navy or army
    Instead of spending my life looking after you
    And oh woman of the house, what ails you?

    REFRAIN

    May my back be broken under this weight
    If I ever come again to bring you sorrow
    And so many women from here to the Blackwater river
    That would go along the road with me and have a drink
    And oh woman of the house, what ails you?

    REFRAIN)

  24. johnhenrycn says:

    Liked that last one. Have to admit that the lilting Irish patois is very charming when the singers or speakers are women. Their menfolk (sorry Jack and Toad) not so much. But some Hollywood Irish is fun. Who can forget this good old Garland standby – certainly not me, an honorary Hibernian:

  25. J.P. says:

    North Americans coming to Ireland expecting to hear the ‘natives’ speaking with a brogue and with outlandish expressions will be disappointed since they are really looking for fanciful creations which they will find more readily at home.
    The mawkish songs represented on this blog are sentimental rubbish uncharacteristic of genuine Irish people.

  26. GC says:

    I was more taken by the first one, JH, This pretty young maid.

    To me it seems to be a description of the kind of gel that a young man desires when he takes a wife. Quite charming indeed.

    Of course, not that many are taking real wives these days among the white races. It’s “partners” so-called these days, isn’t it? Fr Spadaro seems to think the whole world is like that. I have news for him.

    Of course, that the song was sung by women might indicate rather that this is the kind of young girl women think men want as a wife. Intriguing. And charming too.

    Anyway, I’m a big fan of Dolly Parton, who has only ever been married, for decades, to the one man.

  27. kathleen says:

    mmvc @ 08:26

    Maryla, many thanks for that excellent link… I have only managed to get round to reading it just now. The author exposes the glaring flaws in Spadero’s and Pope Francis’ reasoning with their disgraceful acceptance of cohabitation and flabby excuses, all in total disregard of Church teaching!*

    * There are now loads of Catholic blogs continually lamenting Pope Francis’ (and his minions) absolute failure to preach the Truth. It is a real scandal! Do these men not fear God? For how much longer can the Church carry on like this under such appalling leadership?

  28. GC says:

    Very true, kathleen, the article that maryla linked was a very good read and very well written. Highly recommended! I just didn’t want to be the first to say it. 😉

    http://studiomatters.com/cohabitation-mother-church

  29. toadspittle says:

    “I thought that was a Bing Crosby song, Toad?”
    Indeed, GC, it is. And I went looking for it on You Tube, but found the other version and decided to give “The Old Moaner,” as we affectionately used to call him – a rest.
    And it’s reassuring that Bing’s legacy sill lives on.
    At the Saint “Paddy’s” Day parade in NYC, The Gay contingent’s theme song is “Going My Way.” Very appropriate, as all will agree.
    …Superb lyrics.

    In my youth it was considered a mortal sin not to go and see any film in which Bing played a priest.
    (Oh, don’t tell such disgraceful lies Toad – of course it wasn’t – just a venial one.)

    [Moderator: In future please go to the “off topic” link for things not related to the article.]

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