- Now the talking really begins
Pope Francis wanted frankness and openness and that is what he got. But there is also the sense that the real debate in the Church about marriage and families is only just starting
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Christopher Lamb ("Open to the voice of the future", The Tablet, 11 October) writes eloquently on the proceedings of the Synod on the Family. He quotes Archbishop John Dew as saying that the Vatican II teaching on collegiality is close to the heart of Pope Francis and "that he wants to use this Synod to express that and put it into action".
I read with great interest the article (“Catholic peer condemns lack of active women at family synod”, The Tablet, 11 October). I could not agree more and the ratio of women attendees at the Family Synod is disappointing and disheartening. Hopefully this state of affairs will be addressed next year when they convene again.
Of course we English could follow the modern fashion for demanding our “rights” (“England Arise”, 11 October), like children in a playground: "’Tisn't fair. Everyone else has got a parliament. We want a parliament."
Nicholas Boyle's excursus into history ("England arise," The Tablet, 11 October) was wanting in any reference to the Norman Conquest of England and, some hundred odd years later, Ireland, as contributory in the making of England's pre-eminence in the unification of the Britannic Islands, as Aristotle called them.
I read with interest Jack Valero’s article on Bishop Alvero del Portillo (The Tablet, 27 September) but was struck by the phrase that the 1917 Code of Canon Law “considered lay people as receivers of the sacraments, particularly marriage, the sacrament that most distinguishes them”. (Note the present tense).
The polluted centre of London taken together with a mean temperature 3 degrees C warmer than the UK average, should ordain an ecosystem that has long collapsed. This would be a reasonable conclusion based on Mary Colwell’s article “Creation in Peril” (The Tablet, 11 October 2014).
I am writing a book on the single practising Catholic laywoman. So far I have received contributions from many women in UK, Australia and the US but I would be grateful for more contributions from women under 40 and from women in other countries.
It is an awakening and a joy that Cardinal Kasper and Pope Francis are of one mind in stressing the mercy of God. The Church is full of the older generation.
Margaret A. Farley (The Tablet, 27 Sept), in her article in support to homosexual marriage, writes: "Today the meanings of gender have become sufficiently problematised that gender difference cannot simply be assumed as central to marriage in the same way as it has been in the past."
I welcome Fr Paul Chamberlain’s tacit support for the admission of women to the deaconate (Letters, 20 September) but his hope flies in the face of history and the Magisterium’s practice.
To plagiarise Margaret Farley's mention of the importance of time within us in her article on the moral validity of same-sex marriage (27th September), I have never understood the moral approval of same-sex marriage.
I just wonder where the ‘Good News’ of the gospel is in all of this?
Parliament predictably followed your line on IS.
I have read with interest your articles on the Extraordinary Synod on the Family.
Now that the Scottish referendum is behind us, we should encourage our representatives to think seriously about the mirror which it held up to our democracy.
Cardinal Gerhard Müller correctly insists that the Catholic tradition has always committed itself to the indissolubility of marriage. The origin of the Church’s teaching is found in Jesus’ debate with the Pharisees reported in Mark 10:1-12. As well as Mark 10:5-9, prohibition of divorce is found in the gospel text known as Q (Matt 5:32; Luke 16:18). Paul (1 Cor 7:10-11) regards the prohibition of divorce as “a word of the Lord”.
The problem of Bishop Bonny’s position [noting a demise in collegiality between the end of the Second Vatican Council and the publication of Humanae Vitae] (The Tablet, 13 September) is that bishops at the Council were unlikely to challenge the papal teaching of Pope Pius XI or Pius XII, who had expressly forbidden the use of the Pill in a little known address to haematologists the year he died.
Daniel O’Leary's very significant contributions in your paper on "New windows open to the faith” (The Tablet, 20 September) and his previous "Divine evolution" are as timely as they are urgent and challenging.