Msgr. Charles Pope: My Reaction to Querida Amazonia

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I am convinced that just as we were spared from serious error in Humanae Vitae, so the Holy Spirit spared the Church in Querida Amazonia.

By Msgr. Charles Pope, National Catholic Register, 2/16/20

On Wednesday, Feb. 12, Pope Francis released his apostolic exhortation on the Amazon Synod, Querida Amazonia. I was greatly relieved when I read the carefully penned document, as I saw in it an answer to our prayers. You may recall I wrote the following in the National Catholic Register back on Oct. 27 at the close of the Synod:

In the final document of the synod are included proposals for married priests on a wide scale and women ‘deacons.’ The Church is currently deeply divided and, I would argue, on the brink of schism, if the Pope includes such proposals in his apostolic exhortation and plan. We must pray for him as never before to hold the line, much as Pope Paul VI miraculously held the line in 1968 when he wrote Humanae Vitae, upholding the Church’s perennial view of the nature and purpose of human sexuality and the ancient forbiddance of contraception. He did this against pressure from the spirit of the age — a pressure that was even stronger than the pressure Pope Francis currently encounters. And, like Francis, Paul VI was no conservative and was very friendly with the agents of radical change. This makes Humanae Vitae all the more miraculous, and we must allow this to give us hope now that Pope Francis will issue a document that does not take us over the brink.

I am grateful to both God and our Holy Father that the exhortation stopped short of calling for the two most radical demands of the Synod: married priests and female “deacons.” Married priests would surely erode a perennial discipline in the Western Church and cause great consternation among the faithful. “Ordaining” women as “deacons” would plunge us into serious crisis and usher in a deep schism. ….

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