Pope St. John Paul II—Veritatis Splendor (The Splendor of Truth) | Ch. 3
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“While exchanges and conflicts of opinion may constitute normal expressions of public life in a representative democracy, moral teaching certainly cannot depend simply upon respect for a process: indeed, it is in no way established by following the rules and deliberative procedures typical of a democracy... Opposition to the teaching of the Church’s Pastors cannot be seen as a legitimate expression either of Christian freedom or of the diversity of the Spirit’s gifts.”
Veritatis Splendor, or “The Splendor of Truth”, was a papal encyclical promulgated by Pope St. John Paul II on August 6, 1993. The encyclical addresses fundamental questions of the Church’s moral teaching, especially in relation to the various ways in which that teaching had been (and continues to be) challenged by modern strains of dissident theology.
In this third and final chapter, titled “Lest the Cross of Christ Be Emptied of Its Power”, John Paul II emphasizes the profound connection between freedom, moral law, and human flourishing—both for the individual and for society. He further underscores the inseparable link between freedom and truth and stresses the primary role of grace in supporting human freedom and enabling individuals to overcome sin. He ends the encyclical with an appeal to Mary, Mother of Mercy.
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