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Pope Francis

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Pope addresses divorced and re-married Catholics in his weekly general audience

2015-08-05

(-ONLY VIDEO-) In his weekly general audience, Pope Francis talked about divorced and re-married Catholics. He explained that even though these second unions are contrary to the Sacrament of marriage, the doors of the Church, he explained,  are always open. 

The Pope also highlighted that in these irregular situations, it's often children who suffer the most. He called on the Church and Christian communities,  to reach out to these couples and to support their children. 


READ SUMMARY OF CATECHESIS IN ENGLISH:  

Dear Brothers and Sisters, 

We return now to our catechesis on the family, by reflecting on the situation of our brothers and sisters who have divorced and entered a second union.  Though their unions are contrary to the Sacrament of marriage, the Church, as a Mother, seeks the good and salvation of all her children. 

As these situations especially affect children, we are aware of a greater urgency to foster a true welcome for these families in our communities.  For how can we encourage these parents to raise their children in the Christian life, to give them an example of Christian faith, if we keep them at arm’s length?  I am especially grateful to the many pastors, guided by my Predecessors, who have worked diligently to let these families know they are still a part of the Church.  

There is no easy solution for these situations, but we can and must always encourage these families to participate in the Church’s life, through prayer, listening to the Word of God, the Christian education of their children, and service to the poor.  

As the Good Shepherd gives his life for the sheep, so the Church as a Mother gives her life for all her children, by being always the "house of the Father, with doors wide open”.  May everyone, especially Christian families, imitate the Good Shepherd, who knows all his sheep and excludes no one from his infinite love.    
   
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Speaker: I offer an affectionate greeting to all the English-speaking pilgrims and visitors present at today’s Audience, including those from England, South Africa, China and the United States.  May your stay in the Eternal City confirm you in love for our Lord, and may he make you his witnesses, especially for families who feel separated from the Church.  May God bless you all!