ROME: Only a few days into the Extraordinary Synod on the Family, there is already turmoil among the leaders of the Catholic Church, said a worldwide coalition of pro-life and pro-family groups.
Voice of the Family http://voiceofthefamily.info British spokesperson John Smeaton said:
“There’s a clear dividing line between Synod Fathers who are clear about Catholic teaching on human sexuality, and Synod Fathers who offer confusion in their presentation of Church teaching on this and related issues.”
In the lead-up to the Synod, which goes from October 5 to October 19, many Church leaders offered “disturbing and perplexing opinions about critical Church teachings on family,” said North American spokesperson John-Henry Westen.
According to Westen, the problem was enhanced by Pope Francis at the start of the Synod:
“It was startling to see the Pope self-identify as a non-conservative, in an interview released on the first day of the Synod. Of specific concern is the approach to same-sex relationships that exists within the Synod itself. Confusion is rampant.”
Irish spokesperson Patrick Buckley said:
“Some of the reported interventions in the Synod are not in accordance with Catholic teaching and yet are being released without adequate comment, resulting in confusion about church teaching.”
Voice of the Family coordinator Maria Madise said that despite her group’s concerns, it is hoped that:
“The right and duty of parents to be the primary educators of their children — which are rooted in their life-giving union and parental love — will be clearly affirmed in the next days of the Synod.
This is what has brought us together – concern for our families and gratitude to all who have gathered here in Rome to help and defend them.”
About Voice of the Family:
Voice of the Family is an international lay coalition of major pro-life and pro-family organizations that has formed to offer expertise and resources to leaders of the church, the media, NGOs, and governments before, during, and after the Catholic Church’s Synod on the Family. The Synod will be held from October 5 to 19 in Rome.
Voice of the Family consists of 15 member organizations from eight nations on five continents. Members include:
- Campagne Québec-Vie
- Campaign Life Catholics
- Campaign Life Coalition Canada
- Catholic Democrats
- Catholic Voice
- Culture of Life Africa
- European Life Network
- Famiglia Domani
- Family Life International NZ
- Hnutí Pro život ČR
- Human Life International (HLI)
- National Association of Catholic Families (NACF)
- Profesionales por la Ética
- Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC)
The following truths are at the heart of Voice of the Family’s work:
- Sacramental marriage, binding parents together in an indissoluble union, is the greatest protector of children both born and unborn.
- The artificial separation of the unitive and procreative dimensions of the sexual act is a major catalyst of the culture of death.
- Parents are the primary educators of their children and it is through the education and formation of parents, and future parents, that the culture of life will be built.
Voice of the Family has published a position paper for the Synod which in summary says:
- The Extraordinary Synod on the Family has been called to respond to the “widespread cultural, social and spiritual crisis”, which threatens the family today.
- The Synod provides an important opportunity to take concrete steps to address this crisis and give renewed impetus to the “New Evangelisation”.
- If the Synod is to be effective it is essential that the teaching of the Church is affirmed clearly and without ambiguity.
- All proposals which result from the Synod must be founded on the truths of the natural moral law and Divine Revelation.
Our position paper can also be read in: