Cardinal Francis George has responded to comments made by Pope Francis regarding the obsession that some members of the Catholic Church have with same-sex marriage, contraception and abortion. Cardinal George largely ignored those remarks.
Cardinal George, instead, stated that “In his beautiful reflection published in English in America magazine, Pope Francis begins by identifying himself as a sinner, and so are we all. The first thing a sinner striving for conversion needs to hear is that God loves him or her. Mercy is love eager to forgive.”
He went on to say that “That has become the leitmotif of Pope Francis’ teaching, and it puts into perspective the demands of discipleship expressed and clarified in the Church’s established doctrinal and moral teaching. For who the Pope is, we should all be grateful. From how he teaches the truths of the Catholic faith, we can all profit.”
Pope Francis I warned the members of the Catholic Church that they cannot become obsessed with a “disjointed multitude of doctrines.” He also called upon the Church to find a new balance between its political and its spiritual missions or risk the Church falling apart. He also blasted members of the clergy who act like bureaucrats obsessed with small-minded rules.
Pope Francis has made it clear that the Church remains opposed to abortion, same-sex marriage and contraception, but has also made it clear that the interference in politics is hurting the Church.
Joe Murray of the Rainbow Sash Movement responded to Cardinal George’s words by noting that “While the Cardinal’s response supports the general sense of love and mercy he ignored Francis’s call for the Roman Catholic Church’s ministry to stop being ‘obsessed’ with a ‘disjointed multitude of doctrines,’ and that without a new balance, ‘the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards.’ He said “small-minded rules” are driving the faithful away.”
Murray went on to say that “Pope Francis said he is ‘no one to judge’ homosexuals who are of good will and in search of God. And expressed his desire for the church to be accepting of all people. This is where Pope Francis and Cardinal George differ. The Pope clearly understands what the Church Teaches and contrary to the Cardinal he understands that by promoting those teachings, under the mantle of judgment is not done in the spirit of love.”
And added that “The Rainbow Sash Movement is calling on Cardinal George to honor the Pope’s words and stop attacking the Illinois LGBT Community with his baseball bat of anti-Gay Marriage. We all know Cardinal George and the Catholic Church are opposed to Gay Marriage. In my opinion, when the Pope inferred that ‘small minded’ people are driving the faithful away from the Church he was referring to Cardinals and Bishop such as George.”
Murray concluded by noting that “The only question in my mind is what can Cardinal George say positively about the LGBT Community without it being based in bigotry.”