Catholic World News – October 15, 2014
Reflecting on a passage from the Book of Revelation, Pope Francis discussed the bridal nature of the Church in his October 15 general audience.
The Church, he said, prepares each day for her definitive meeting with Christ the Bridegroom. Quoting St. Paul, he asked the crowd to repeat three times with him, “We shall always be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:17).
Following the audience, Pope Francis encouraged families to pray the Rosary daily and paid tribute to St. Teresa of Avila and Pope St. John Paul II, whose feast days are October 15 and 16. “Let us learn from their evangelical radicalness.” (Source)
This is curious timing, to say the least, given the anarchy at the Synod. The debate about homosexuals and Communion for the re-married goes exactly to the heart of the “bridal nature of the Church.”
As Pope Francis pointed out, the feast of St. John Paul II is near, the man who did more than any other human being to expound on the meaning of sex and the family. In his Theology of the Body, he remined us how Scripture, Sacred Tradition and Magisterial teaching have unanimously instructed us that marriage is a sign and genuine participation in the marriage of Christ and His Church. Yes, that eternal and indissoluble marriage union to which we can all participate today through Holy Communion. “We shall always be with the Lord.” That’s what Revelations and 1 Thessalonians 4:17 are referring to.
Communion for the re-married is the “sacrament” of an unfaithful and adulterous god. It doesn’t exactly scream “We shall always be with the Lord,” does it?
Communion for homosexuals is the “sacrament” of a god who could never unite with us in the most intimate way and who could never bring forth fruit in us.
Neither of these approaches is compatible with the “bridal nature of the Church.”
So it’s very particular that Pope Francis would preach about this now. Is the Holy Spirit tweaking his conscience? Or did the Spirit simply stick His foot in the Pope’s mouth? (That would be a very good thing, as opposed to when we stick our own foot in our mouth.)
Of course, this doesn’t solve the crisis in the Church, nor is it a substitute for the public clarification that Cardinal Burke has called for.