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Pope said teaching on divorce and Communion cannot change, Spanish bishop reports

September 25, 2014

A Spanish bishop has reported that Pope Francis said it is impossible to change Church teaching to allow divorced and remarried Catholics to receive Communion.

Bishop Demetrio Fernandez of Cordoba told the daily Diario Cordoba that during an ad limina visit, the "Kasper proposal" (which would open the possibility of Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics) arose in discussions. "We asked the Pope himself," Bishop Fernandez said, "and he responded that a person married in the Church who has divorced and entered into a new civil marriage cannot approach the sacraments."

The Pope went on to say that the Church's teaching on this matter is clearly established, following the words of Jesus, and cannot be altered, the Spanish bishop said.

Bishop Fernandez said that he was revealing the Pope's remarks "because sometimes people say that everything is going to change, and there are some things that cannot be changed."


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  • Posted by: - Sep. 28, 2014 9:58 AM ET USA

    This situation is a good example why pope's are chosen in secret. We sheep are always in danger of our heads exploding whenever we become privy to the double secret machinations of the big boppers.

  • Posted by: Bernadette - Sep. 27, 2014 12:28 PM ET USA

    I agree with "filioque." There has been nothing but confusion on this subject since Cardinal Kasper opened his mouth with his suggestions for change in Church teaching. The pope gave him 2 hours to speak and seemed to be agreeing with him. At any rate, he didn't say anything to the contrary. And Cardinal Kasper has apparently been upset and the pope "irritated" by the publication of 2 books on the indissolubility of marriage coming out at this time. Just what gives? The sheep are scattered

  • Posted by: christhavemercy821235 - Sep. 27, 2014 3:40 AM ET USA

    Let's all fast and pray for the Bishops who would be attending Synod in October and pray especially the Holy Spirit would guide our Pope.

  • Posted by: jackist7902 - Sep. 26, 2014 8:23 PM ET USA

    In response to filioque, perhaps the Pope has enough confidence in the correctness of the Church's teaching that he thinks an open discussion of the issue will prove to be educational for the Church.

  • Posted by: filioque - Sep. 26, 2014 1:57 PM ET USA

    Well, thank you very much. Then why was Card. Kaspar allowed to give the opening address (two hours) to the consistory last February, and why did the Pope make a big point the next day of praising him, and why has he been allowed to publish his ideas and claim the Pope's approval, and why have eight (or is it ten, and counting?)cardinals suddenly spoken and published to defend the words of Jesus and the teaching of the Church? This confusion did not come from nowhere and it is not an accident

  • Posted by: - Sep. 26, 2014 11:38 AM ET USA

    The hardest thing for people to do is change. There are various reasons for this, one of which is that change requires us to leave what we are comfortable with. I hate it when a website decides to change its format to make it "better." All of us like things as we've had them in the past, so most Catholics love it when the Church says it can't/won't change, which is one of our best evangelical weapons when we approach lapsed Catholics and non-Catholic Christians-the unchangeable rock, the Church.