Leaked letter restarts ‘Amoris wars’

What happened?

The debate over Amoris Laetitia has reopened after a letter written by Pope Francis was leaked. The Pope wrote to Buenos Aires bishops about their proposed guidelines for priests. These said that if the “responsibility and culpability” of a remarried person are “diminished”, then “Amoris Laetitia opens up the possibility of access to … Reconciliation and the Eucharist”. The Pope’s letter said the document “completely explains the meaning” of Amoris Laetitia’s chapter eight – the most controversial.

What the blogosphere said

At onepeterfive.com, Steve Skojec argued that, if authentic, the Pope’s letter would confirm “that he intended to allow those living in objective grave sin to receive the Sacraments of Confession and Communion without the requisite repentance.” Skojec argued that this was a proposal of “sacrilege” which “could arguably be considered heretical”.

But Fr John Zuhlsdorf, at wdtprs.com, said the letter’s importance shouldn’t be overstated. “The Pope does not change doctrine or discipline in letters to individual bishops.”

​How to continue reading…

This article appears in the Catholic Herald magazine - to read it in full subscribe to our digital edition from just 30p a week

The Catholic Herald is your essential weekly guide to the Catholic world; latest news, incisive opinion, expert analysis and spiritual reflection