Friday, October 16, 2015

First Communicant Shares Host With Divorced Dad

From an article in the Anchoress Blog

Pope Francis  and 270 Synod Fathers listened with emotion today in the Synod Hall to a story shared by a bishop who was celebrating a First Communion Mass in a parish. When one of the children receiving First Communion came to the altar to receive  the consecrated host in his hand, on his own initiative broke the Host two, giving half to his father who accompanied him, but being a divorced remarried Catholic could not receive Communion directly.

A small episode but emblematic of the suffering Catholics who live in irregular situations encounter, who are excluded from receiving the sacraments. And above all it testifies that the children of divorce, a sizeable percentage of kids today, can not accept the exclusion of parents from this summit of Catholic-Christian life. In fact, many of these children cannot continue their own journey of faith in the Church because a mother or father are remarried divorcees or other irregular circumstances.

A widespread unease at all the latitudes of the Church that the Synod is facing these days. This was underlined by German spokesman Bernard Hagenkord. He sided "in defense of Catholic doctrine today repeating the teaching of the Catholic Church on marriage, and arguing that no one has the authority 'to change and act on God's word."

"Many others, however, 'say that following the path of Jesus', the Church can not 'permanently exclude someone from the sacraments. A position represented, but not dominant in the discussion, but indeed remarkable", said the spokesman of the German language defining the ongoing debate "constructive and high quality '."

Among the possible solutions and 'it has been proposed that the admission of divorced and remarried to the sacraments decided on a "case by case" basis, possibly with some limitations. Father Federico Lombardi., Holy See Director of Communications said "I am impressed by the richness of the proposals also practices that have come in terms of aid to couples and marriage preparation," .

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