Pope appoints leading opponents of Catholic doctrine to Ordinary Synod

Voice of the Family notes with alarm that amongst the special appointees Pope Francis has invited to the Ordinary Synod there are prelates who have demonstrated support for positions contrary to the teaching or practice of the Catholic Church. (For further information on the positions supported by these prelates, click the relevant links below.)

The list of appointees, who will be attending the Synod solely because of the Holy Father’s invitation, includes:

The list of special appointees also includes Mgr Pio Vito Pinto, who headed the commission that introduced radical annulment reforms last week. In an article in the Vatican newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, Mgr Pinto openly stated that the reforms are intended by the Holy Father to (a) benefit the “divorced and remarried” and (b) greatly increase the number of marriages declared null.

There are other prelates attending the Synod whose presence there should cause grave concern to all who wish to defend the family based on marriage, and the children who are its most vulnerable members. These include:

In an interview with Portuguese broadcaster Radio Renascenca Pope Francis confirmed that the Instrumentum Laboris would be the basis for discussion at the Synod. He said:

“As for the synod, you journalists are already familiar with the Instrumentum Laboris. We are going to speak of that, of what is in there. It’s three weeks, one theme, one chapter, for each week.”

We demonstrated in our analysis of the document that the Instrumentum Laboris constitutes a direct attack on the entire edifice of Catholic doctrine on life, marriage and the family. In particular it does this by:

  • Undermining the doctrine of Humanae Vitae by proposing a false understanding of the relationship between conscience and the moral law (paragraph 137)
  • Discussing artificial methods of reproduction without giving any judgement on the morality of such methods or making any reference to previous Catholic teaching, or to the enormous loss of human life that results from their use (paragraph 34)
  • Proposing the admission of the “divorced and remarried” to Holy Communion without amendment of life (paragraphs 120-125)
  • Reducing the indissolubility of marriage to the level of an “ideal” (paragraph 42)
  • Suggesting that cohabitation and “living together” have “positive aspects” and can, to some extent, be considered legitimate forms of union (paragraphs 57, 61, 63, 99, 102)
  • Preparing the ground for the acceptance of same-sex unions by acknowledging the need to define “the specific character of such unions in society” (paragraph 8)
  • Denying the full rights of parents regarding the provision of sex education to their children (paragraph 86)

The Ordinary Synod has a heterodox agenda and many of the prelates attending it have already shown themselves either supportive of that agenda or unwilling to resist it. The family is in grave danger from threats emanating from within the Church, as well as from international institutions and national governments.

The time has come for all Catholics, at every level of the Church, to recognize the full gravity of the crisis that now engulfs us. Each and every one of us, clergy or lay, has the right and the duty to defend Catholic doctrine and practice from attacks by members of the hierarchy.

According to the knowledge, competence, and prestige which they possess, they [the Christian faithful] have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful, without prejudice to the integrity of faith and morals, with reverence toward their pastors, and attentive to common advantage and the dignity of persons.

-Code of Canon Law, Canon 212 §3