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Cardinal Baldisseri clarifies thoughts on 'updating' Church teaching about marriage

May 28, 2014

Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri said that he was not calling for a change in Church teachings on marriage in an email interview with the National Catholic Register.

The secretary-general of the Synod of Bishops, who had raised hackles by saying that the Church should “update” the teachings set forth by St. John Paul II in Familiaris Consortio, explained that he was using the term “update” as St. John XXIII had used it when he called upon the Second Vatican Council to update Church teachings.

“The Church’s teaching is contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which everyone can read,” the cardinal said. “The Church’s magisterium exists, which ensures the integrity and authenticity of the faith.”

When asked by the Register to comment on the perception that the Synod staff has been seen as distancing itself from the writings of Pope John Paul II, Cardinal Baldisseri did not answer directly. “Each person, in various stages of life, roles and charisms, brings his contribution,” he said.


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  • Posted by: jg23753479 - May. 29, 2014 1:58 PM ET USA

    Somehow I'm not terribly reassured by this 'clarification'.

  • Posted by: unum - May. 29, 2014 12:26 PM ET USA

    I firmly believe that the Synod staff, known to the laity as the Church bureaucracy, was the target of the Holy Father's remarks. Pastor's who act as bureaucrats and diocesan marriage tribunals provide little incentive the divorced and remarried Catholics to remain in or return to the Church. The love of God is not usually found in the treatment of divorced and remarried Catholics by the Church, but they are often welcomed by other denominations.