The relation of sensus fidelium to Amoris laetitia

And I am claiming that what is being taught (even if implicitly) in AL is that it is okay to break the 6th commandment and is therefore absolutely not a product of the sensus fidelium.

That’s interesting. I had not heard that before.

But the paragraphs in question, according to the article you cite, did pass the second synod. Apparently, the Holy Father had every right to insist that the discussions in question be carried over to the second synod.

And, as the article states:

“In short, it cannot be demonstrated that two-thirds of the Synod Father at either the 2014 or 2015 synods voted for a change in sacramental discipline and a development of doctrine whereby, in some cases, people living in an objective state of adultery, who intend to continue living in such a state, may now receive Holy Communion.”

This is true. No one is advocating for people living in an objective state of adultery, who intend to continue living in such a state, to be able to receive the Eucharist. This idea keeps being brought up by the very people who don’t want it to be the case; it’s an answer to a question nobody asked.

I’ve heard that the African bishops were against the wording in those paragraphs because of issues they are having with polygamy. I don’t know much about that though.

What “fuller participation” means is the problem. To interpret it in some particular way - as footnote 351 does - is the task of the authors of AL, not of the synod.

Nobody is EXPLICITLY advocating for adultery, but implicitly that is exactly what is occurring.

None of this has anything to do with the sensus fidelium. It is about people discussing and voting and producing fallible documents. :shrug:

This is off topic, but to think that the Holy Father is implicitly advocating that the laity break the 6th commandment is ridiculous.

I would think some of AL is ultimately an appeal for a recognition that God is the judge of a marriage’s legitimacy; and that the institutional approach, which is falling short, is currently too flawed of a method in discerning who and who does not receive the Eucharist.

The bishops don’t live in a bubble. They do not reference themselves over and over again in a feedback loop. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the International Theological Commission wrote a lengthy text on the sensus fedei in the life of the Church in 2014…but maybe it was.

That is a pretty serious accusation against the Holy Father. Care to back that up with what sentence you believe teaches a violation of the 6th commandment, that is if you are going to slander the Holy Father? It seems only right you provide evidence for such an outrageous claim.

It’s not off topic - if that is what is occurring, it can’t possibly come from the sensus fidelium.

The fuss over AL is exactly that. AL is an implicit permission to continue to live “more uxorio” with a person whom one is not legitimately married to after a prior union presumed to be a valid marriage. Our Lord called that adultery.

Despite whether or not the authors of AL intend to teach formally against the 6th commandment, which is certainly not the case, the document is still materially teaching such. If it really isn’t, then clarification is warranted.

What is actually happening on the ground is that people are dropping their annulment cases - “Pope Francis says I don’t need an annulment.” What an unbelievable disaster.

It is not a matter of violating the charism of infallibility however… Hopefully that is clear.

Which bishops? Some indeed do live in a bubble. See the German treatment of Africa during the synod, for instance…

Footnote 351.

Is there some hard data around to underpin that?

That footnote does not say that it is okay to commit adultery, as you claim. Since you would not quote it, and since a three digit number is not and answer, here is the footnote.

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 [2013],
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).

What is the error? Is the Eucharist for the perfect? Should the confessional be a torture chamber?

What this footnote does** not** say, teach or imply is that it is “okay” to commit adultery.

Certainly it does not say that (but lack of explicit articulation may fail to dissuade some from inferring that).

What I’m not clear on is whether it is saying that “Adultery (ongoing) need not be an impediment to receipt of the Eucharist”. This idea then would surely broaden to other objective areas of sin.

Or is it saying that: “In some cases, a second marriage, lived fully, without a decree of nullity in respect of a first marriage, is not contrary to the 6th commandment”.


And nobody is clear on what it means. And it is in no way clear how the second sense could be possible.

I think it would be obvious the second sentence must be true, at least at times, since the decree of nullity does not nullify a marriage and objectively does not affect validity.

I think the one thing it does say, and one does not have to infer anything, is that the sentence it references indicates that objectively grave matter does not mean one must be in a state of mortal sin. For completion, the sentence with this footnote is:

Because of forms of conditioning and mitigating factors, it
is possible that in an objective situation of sin –
which may not be subjectively culpable, or fully
such – a person can be living in God’s grace, can
love and can also grow in the life of grace and
charity, while receiving the Church’s help to this

If one is still in a state of grace, and this is possible in these irregular situations, then recognizing this is not the same, nothing like, and a far cry from saying it is okay to commit adultery.

So this relies on the notion that the validity of the first marriage is a fact known to God, and thus there are “2nd marriages” when there is no adultery because there was no first marriage (though only God knows that with certainty).

But your response does not assert that THIS is the position the Pope is relying on.

I think the one thing it does say, and one does not have to infer anything, is that the sentence it references indicates that objectively grave matter does not mean one must be in a state of mortal sin.

This remark tends to favour the position described in my first intepretation. One can imagine scenarios, not specific to adultery, where the matter is grave but the culpability reduced - and thus communion (by the reasoning you outline) is possible (at least from the person’s perspective, leaving aside the minister for now).

But does this get us to the point where we can say that the sexual relations themselves can be embraced - with no duty to seek to refrain (to the extent possible)? How can we say “yes” to that, unless the conditions of my 2nd interpretation apply? We can’t know the mind of God, so is the best we can do to substitute a good-faith personal belief that the first marriage was not valid?

Since you used the word “can”, I think so. That is the point of pastoral accompaniment. Likewise, there will be a duty to refrain to the extent possible, depending on the specific people and circumstances. The point is to stop making a few categories that apply to all. There are simply hundreds of possible situations.

I’m referring to what’s been seen on the ground by bishops since Familiars Consortio came out in 1981…a proactive look at the sensus fidei of the laity, by the bishops, since 1981 as it relates to AL’s formation; not a reactionary look at the sensus fidei of the laity since April of 2016.

True, there are some wrinkles that need to be worked out. The recommendations from Vatican ll are still being smoothed out. But, like Vatican ll, any action taken on the ground, concerning changes in practices, will be initiated by clergy, not laity, despite what the laity might like to believe. AL concerns the actions of clergy. AL is not an invitation to the Eucharist, it’s an invitation to go see your pastor.

Individual bishops in general, not national groups.

But now we’re getting somewhere with the *sensus fidelium *. With your mention of the African bishops not getting as much influence during the synod is concern for a proper balance of the sensus fidelium, if its argued that bishops from Africa should have equal influence on the Holy Father; but if the African bishops are not united, does that diminish their influence?

When referring to the African and German bishops, are you referring to this:

Originally Posted by e_c View Post
…What is actually happening on the ground is that people are dropping their annulment cases - “Pope Francis says I don’t need an annulment.” What an unbelievable disaster.

It’s not hard to imagine e_c’s scenario. But it’s debatable whether or not an individual’s misinterpretation of AL is an unbelievable disaster for the Church. :stuck_out_tongue:

But, this thread should not turn into a debate about the implications of footnote 351 from AL. Instead, why don’t we stay on topic and discuss how the *sensus fidei *of the laity, or the bishops, contributed to the Holy Father’s desire to have the footnote, or any particular paragraph, included in AL. Or, take the question back to the OP, and discuss what role did the sensus fidelium play in AL’s formation…either at the level of the first or second synod, or at the level of the Holy Father’s formation of the final document AL.

There is a pretty glaring problem with the bold section. What exactly has changed that would justify a radical shift about marriage? Nothing. It is not like usury. Nor has anyone been talking about this in a meaningful way. It is the St. Gallen’s club that has been talking about it.

Wrinkles? More than that.

Yes, the snobbery bubble of Germany, which is leading this front. Germany might be the least spiritually relevant 1st world country on Earth, and they get to lead the charge? Maybe it is the exorbitant wealth that is corrupting their thoughts, even subconsciously? You know about the church tax, right? Keep the untold number of divorced and remarried persons Catholic, keep their tax dollars…

And nobody has yet to provide a situation where one whom the Church considers married to someone else can proceed to live “more uxorio” with another person without committing adultery.

What has changed are the movements of people and the influence of atheist’s errors, or as Our Lady of Fatima said: “Russia’s errors”, has seemingly overwhelmed the influence the Church has on people. I think it’s a merciful position in order to bring people who are in error back into the fold.

I’ve never heard of the German church tax, very interesting. Here’s a link for everyone else:

Anyway, Pope Francis is well aware of the German church tax and the problems it could or does create. I doubt if it had any influence whatsoever on AL.

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