What should be obvious is not obvious:
- We can’t make excuses for our situations. We have free will. We have a choice.
- The language used is a ploy to water down the frankness of the Gospel:
Words such as “irregular situation”, “imperfect situations they find themselves in”, “marriage is an ‘ideal’ to be strived for”, “discernment”, “internal forum”, “accompaniment”, distort the reality and perception of sin.
- The words “mortal sin”, and “living in sin” are not used to describe the situations of the people referred to.
- When the practice becomes a habit, you lose your sense of sin (e.g. living together, divorced /remarried without annulment;)
- Moral theology is precise – you cannot apply the “situation ethics” principles. This denies the teachings of Christ. It assumes that we know better.
- Jesus forgave but He also said “Sin no more”
- “Gospel frankness is needed, not flattery” (Fr. Gerald Murray- Canon lawyer)
Words are used to confuse, dilute, excuse, blame, label, but not to tell the Truth.
- “it can no longer simply be said that all those in any ‘irregular’ situations are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace.” (AL §301)
The true meaning of this sentence is obscured by its structure. “Basically he says those people have sanctifying grace and are not in mortal sin- simply said!!” These words are deadly landmines for any soul who treads there.
This means that div/remarried adulterers, gay couples, unmarried couples are NOT in mortal sin.
- “The situations they find themselves in” – These people CHOSE their situations, over and above God’s law. They have free will – a gift from God. How many of these people even attempted to have their marriage annulled?
- The language used by Bergoglio to characterize people: Those who believe in the Truths of the Catholic Faith as Jesus taught, are labelled as “rigorous”, “rosary-counters”, “they throw stones at people’s hearts”,
In (§351) He makes comments referring to Confession as a torture chamber, and Holy Communion as a prize for the perfect– both of which are never in reality really considered in this way by any Catholic I know. This statement is insulting to priests and to the faithful.
(§351) In certain cases, this can include the help of the sacraments. Hence, “I want to remind priests that the confessional must not be a torture chamber, but rather an encounter with the Lord’s mercy” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium [24 November 2013], 44: AAS 105 , 1038). I would also point out that the Eucharist “is not a prize for the perfect, but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak” (ibid., 47: 1039). 352 Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (24 November 2013), 44: AAS 105 (2013), 1038-1039.
In the quote above, he refers to two characterizations of the Sacraments as if they were in opposition. It is true that the Eucharist ”is a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak” but only for those not in a state of mortal sin, in which case it becomes a further condemnation for their souls.
It is true that Confession/Reconciliation is ‘an encounter with Lords mercy’, but it’s not true that it is a torture chamber in any way, if you envision it as an act of Mercy.
Here again, emotive words and images are used to misrepresent and distort the Sacraments themselves.