QUOTE TO NOTE: Pope Francis’ Words on Doctrinal Development Readily Applicable to LGBT Issues

Last week, Pope Francis made in important statement on the development of doctrine which is readily applicable to LGBT issues in the church. Speaking at an event marking the 25th anniversary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church’s publication, Francis told those gathered:

Pope Francis

“Doctrine cannot be preserved without allowing it to develop, nor can it be tied to an interpretation that is rigid and immutable without demeaning the working of the Holy Spirit.  ‘God, who in many and various ways spoke of old to our fathers’ (Heb 1:1), ‘uninterruptedly converses with the bride of his beloved Son’ (Dei Verbum, 8).  We are called to make this voice our own by ‘reverently hearing the word of God’ (ibid., 1), so that our life as a Church may progress with the same enthusiasm as in the beginning, towards those new horizons to which the Lord wishes to guide us.”

Pope Francis also said “the word of god cannot be moth-balled like some old blanket in an attempt to keep insects at bay!” but is “a dynamic and living reality that develops and grows.” Though his application of these remarks was about absolutely prohibiting the death penalty, his powerful acknowledgement that doctrine develops opens the possibility that church teachings on sexuality and gender could develop, too. Indeed numerous theologians and other faithful have proposed the need for such developments in recent decades as the “new horizons” to which God is moving the church. That the pope himself has reiterated Vatican II’s teaching on doctrinal development, which had been suppressed under his predecessors, moves that possibility of development a bit closer to becoming reality.

Robert Shine, New Ways Ministry, October 14, 2017

5 replies
  1. Friends
    Friends says:

    Amen and Alleluia! All of us, in our heart of hearts, truly want to love and support Pope Francis, because of his essential goodness of intention. He’s probably the most charismatic Pope since the reign of Pope St. John XXIII, who gave us Vatican II. But Francis is also buffeted by conflicting demands and dissenting constituencies within the Church. We all need to stand proud and strong for the loved ones in our own lives, through whose love we see, and we directly experience, the love that Jesus Himself has for all of his Pilgrim people here on this troubled earth.

  2. Bishop Carlos A Florido, osf
    Bishop Carlos A Florido, osf says:

    Excellent! Neither salvation, creation or doctrine are immutable. They depend and evolve on the revelations of the Spirit.

  3. Erma Durkin
    Erma Durkin says:

    I find Posts, such as the one above, so necessary to our lives as Catholic Christians. The Holy Father encourages us to live in the light of understanding and truth that we have, over the centuries, uncovered in our desire to live and share Peace and Goodness wherever we encounter another. Hope you continue to post these enlightening quotes from Pope Francis that we might have missed attending to our busy lives.


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