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Pope Francis

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The Pope encourages the integration of the divorced in the Church

2016-04-08

The Pope reaches out to the divorced and remarried who wish to reconcile with the Church.

Because they broke the promises of their first marriage, for example, they can not receive communion, teach catechism or be godparents. However, the Pope does not want to close the door on those who sincerely wish to resume the sacraments because their divorce prevents them.

The Pope asks priests and bishops to face "these situations with a constructive response” and to help them integrate each case with its own sense of measure into the Church.

Throughout the text, there are many invitations to appreciate the importance of personal conscience, which matured in conversation with the priest.

Pope Francis says that this does not mean that the Church should make for good all situations:

"Naturally, if someone flaunts an objective sin as if it were part of the Christian ideal, or wants to impose something other than what the Church teaches, he or she can in no way presume to teach or preach to others; this is a case of something which separates from the community.”

The Pope gives several examples. He says it's not the same situation for those who have been abandoned or for those who have betrayed and abandon his or her partner.

Pope Francis recalls that "since the degree of responsibility is not equal in all cases, the consequences or effects of a rule need not necessarily always be the same.”

The Pope takes into consideration the good intentions of those who speak in conscience and seek spiritual help, without trying to "put their desires above the common good of the Church.”

This is why he invites the divorced who are interested, to speak to a priest and warns that "they may not always encounter in them a confirmation of their own ideas or desires, but they will surely receive some light to help them better understand their situation and discover a path to personal growth.”

This is only one of the nine chapters of the innovative apostolic exhortation titled, "Amoris Laetitia” on the family, in which the Pope asks the Church to not tire of promoting the beauty of Christian marriage, and work to help married couples to happily keep their promises.


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