- Jul 8, 2020
Bishop Edward Burns, appointed December 13 as the new Bishop of Dallas, Texas, has pledged to commit the Church to solidarity with immigrants, and also expressed basic support for the pastoral approach to marriage and the family reflected in Pope Francis’s apostolic exhortation ‘Amoris Laetitia.’
Cardinal Kevin Farrell says if the Church does things right, we’ll never get to the provisions of ‘Amoris Laetitia’ on divorce and remarriage. “Much more needs to be done by the conferences of bishops…instead of saying, ‘Oh, that’s a wonderful document, and let every bishop do what he wants to do,’ it’s got to become a priority issue. It would be as if it never happened,” he said.
If we’re to look at today’s debate in the Church over Pope Francis’s document ‘Amoris Laetitia’ in purely political terms, a curious fact emerges: Both conservatives and liberals in the argument seem to be embracing a strategy not necessarily most conducive to their success.
The three newly created American cardinals responded to Francis’s homily during the Nov. 19 consistory, in which the pope said polarization and exclusion are “burgeoning and considered the only way to resolve conflicts.”
Pretty much everything a pope does exercises leadership and shapes culture in the Church, whether or not it comes wrapped in a binding magisterial declaration. Today is an excellent illustration of the point, as Pope Francis will create 17 new cardinals in an event called a “consistory,” 13 of whom will be eligible to elect his successor.
“Why would a bishop delay interpreting and applying ‘Amoris Laetitia’ for the benefit of his people?” said Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia. “On a matter as vital as sacramental marriage, hesitation and ambiguity are neither wise nor charitable.”