Big Les

the Drunken Prophet

    Splitting Hairesy – part 2

    January 13th, 2024

    05 Jan 2024

    RE; Fiducia Supplicans

    Prerequisites: Responsum and Dubia

    Your Excellency,

    After further reflection, I’d like to attempt to answer the question(s) skirted in my first email which are barely perceptible in the declaration itself.

    The first question is, “Why promulgate a declaration to interpret the pastoral meaning of blessings?” By inference the need would seem to be to fill a doctrinal void that would justify the possibility of blessing a rather particular group of people. To my point, this group of people is same-sex couples. They are couples by virtue (or vice) of being actively involved in a homosexual union. I do not wish to further clarify.

    The next question is preeminent, “Can the Church bless same-sex unions?” For many the answer is simply no, and the CDF’s Responsum (negative) affirms this. but for some answering that question is more complex. I like to think the complexity stems from a sincere desire to welcome and reach out to the marginalized, but I fear such sensitivities obscure the question and cause confusion and dissension.

    The primary source of this confusion is in the language of the DDF’s declaration which draws a false distinction between liturgical blessings and pastoral (what I previously referred to as non-liturgical) blessings. I see this false distinction as facilitating an inverted category mistake whereby the answer to the question, “Can the Church bless same-sex unions?” would seem to be yes. Yet, not even three years ago the CDF said:

    …it is not licit to impart a blessing on relationships, or partnerships, even stable, that involve sexual activity outside of marriage (i.e., outside the indissoluble union of a man and a woman open in itself to the transmission of life), as is the case of the unions between persons of the same sex. The presence in such relationships of positive elements, which are in themselves to be valued and appreciated, cannot justify these relationships and render them legitimate objects of an ecclesial blessing, since the positive elements exist within the context of a union not ordered to the Creator’s plan. [responsum]

    Take note of the language, and allow me to be pedantic for a moment. No distinction is drawn by the CDF, but the blessing is simply qualified as ecclesial. When the Church imparts a blessing it is channeled through the clergy and done according to proper form. However, if the union to be blessed runs contrary to the natural law, it cannot be blessed as doing so would seem to render the union (relationship, partnership, couple, etc.) legitimate. To instruct the clergy that a distinction can be drawn is to insert a loophole that becomes a wedge.

    Compounding the confusion is the statement released by the USCCB that the “Church’s teaching on marriage has not changed” as if that were in question. This is a red herring of sorts albeit inadvertent. I can understand the need for peace and unity in the Church particularly at a time when there is so much division, but silence can be just as deadly. A clear and authoritative answer is needed here. Can the Church bless same-sex couples? Please pardon me if I sound impudent or imprudent.

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