In Mark 8, we read that Jesus elevated Peter to the role of His first vicar on earth. However, we also read that after Jesus told them of His impending crucifixion. Peter objected. Immediately Jesus rebuked him, saying "get behind me, Satan. You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men". Notice that Jesus did not "discuss" and "dialogue" with Peter. He taught Peter the truth in no uncertain terms, and that truth simply was not a topic of legitimate debate. Objective truth never is subject to debate for truth stands on its own merits, regardless of the opinions of mere humans. That same principle holds for the truths that are solemnly declared by the Church for they are the very teachings of Jesus.
Sadly our current pontiff shows signs of falling into Peter's error. We know that those Catholics who are validly married in the Church and then divorce and take up with other people are living in the sin of adultery. They cannot be admitted to Holy Communion, lest they burden their souls with additional mortal sins of sacrilege. These are immutable truths, not subject to debate. Yet as we read the interim report of last month's extraordinary synod, we see that these topics were indeed debated by prelates who should know better than that. Pay attention to paragraphs 47-48, and 50-52. Those who wrote these paragraphs undoubtedly toy with the heinous notion that these truths, taught by Jesus Christ Himself through the Magisterium, are subject to debate and even doubt and disobedience. Towards the end of the synod, these paragraphs were voted out of the report by the synod fathers. Incredibly and yes, inexcusably, the Holy Father ordered that these paragraphs remain in the final report, thus opening the topics once again to debate at next year's ordinary synod. We also note with dismay that the Holy Father has retained Archbishop Bruno Forte as special secretary of the synod. It was he who wrote paragraphs 50-52.
Already one can see the scandal wrought by this de facto wavering on the truths that have always been taught by the Church. Many good priests and religious are now finding themselves in constant "damage control" mode, trying to repair the damage done by signals from the synod that are conflicted at best. Read this account by Father Jerry Pokorski in the Catholic Thing.
In a valiant effort to prevent much damage at next year's synod, Cardinal Burke is urging all the faithful to write to the Pope to ask him to remove these topics from the agenda for the next synod. Here is contact information.
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