Posts Tagged contraception

How Pope Francis’ ‘Amoris Laetitia’ could affect families and the Church / The New York Times

In what could be an important moment for his leadership of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis is scheduled to issue a major document on Friday (Apr. 8) regarding family issues. It is titled ‘Amoris Laetitia,’ Latin for ‘The Joy of Love.’

“In the document, known as an apostolic exhortation, the pope could change church practice on thorny subjects like whether divorced Catholics who remarry without having obtained annulments can receive holy communion. He might address debates over same-sex relationships, cohabitation and polygamy, an issue in Africa. Or, he could sidestep such divisive topics and stick to broader philosophical statements.

“For the past two years, Francis has guided the church through a sweeping exercise of self-examination that some scholars have compared to the Second Vatican Council. Catholics around the world filled out detailed questionnaires about whether the church meets their families’ needs. Bishops and other church officials spent two tumultuous meetings at the Vatican, known as synods, debating and arguing.

“The broad topic was whether the Catholic Church should reposition itself, and how. Francis listened, prodded and sometimes steered the process, but he mostly kept his own counsel. Until now.

“Having led Catholics into such delicate terrain, Francis has stirred hope and fear. Some religious conservatives warn he could destabilize the church and undermine Catholic doctrine. Some liberals, though, are hoping Francis will directly address same-sex marriage and contraception in a way that would make the church more responsive to today’s realities.

“‘I’m sure he knew he would touch some nerves,’ said John Thavis, a longtime Vatican analyst and the author of ‘The Vatican Diaries.’ ‘He may not have appreciated how much opposition there could be.’

“But both sides might be disappointed.”

By Laurie Goodstein and Jim Yardley — Click here to read the rest of this story.

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Pope Francis Faces Church Divided over Doctrine, Global Poll of Catholics Finds / Washington Post

Most Catholics worldwide disagree with church teachings on divorce, abortion and contraception and are split on whether women and married men should become priests, according to a large new poll released Sunday (Feb. 9) and commissioned by the U.S. Spanish-language network Univision.

On the topic of gay marriage, two-thirds of Catholics polled agree with church leaders. Overall, however, the poll of more than 12,000 Catholics in 12 countries reveals a church dramatically divided: Between the developing world in Africa and Asia, which hews closely to doctrine on these issues, and Western countries in Europe, North America and parts of Latin America, which strongly support practices that the church teaches are immoral.”

By Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post — Click here to read the rest of this story.

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No Consensus on Meaning of Vatican Synod Questionnaire / National Catholic Reporter

Nearly a week after news that the Vatican has asked for the world’s bishops to distribute among Catholics a questionnaire on issues like contraception, same-sex marriage and divorce “immediately” and “as widely as possible,” there is no consensus on what that direction means.

“Moreover, comparing notes from recent Vatican statements, it is hard to decipher whether the call for consultation is unprecedented or something that’s happened for decades.

“The Vatican’s chief spokesman said in an interview over the weekend that the Vatican’s request for the world’s bishops to survey Catholics on how certain topics affect their lives was part of a habitual “praxis.”

“Yet the official who sent the questionnaire said Tuesday it is part of a wide-ranging project to reform how the Vatican reaches out to bishops and faithful around the world.” By Joshua McElwee, National Catholic Reporter

Read the rest of McElwee’s article by clicking here.

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