Pope Francis received seven ex-prists and their families in a visit, who have given up their priesthood in the past years to marry
(Rome) The papal remedy of Misericordina is not a cure. It is bestowed upon some, some not. This is decided according to how the affected parties will fit into the papal line. Last Friday, the Pope visited seven former priests, who were laicized, and allowed to marry.
Not participating were the defenders of the Sacrament of marriage and the Church's moral teachings. At least not those who turned in public appeals with the requests to Pope Francis, to correct the controversial passages of the Post-Synodal Exhortation Amoris laetitia or completely withdraw the letter (Katholisches.info reported).
On the previous Friday, there were seven former priests who had given up on their priesthood and married.
On November 11th, the head of the Catholic Church visited seven "young" men who had given up on their priesthood in recent years, according to the Spanish press agency EFE.
The gesture is part of a papal initiative within the framework of the Holy Year of Mercy, which is called the "Fridays of Mercy". On these Fridays Francis holds private visits "without prior notice", according to EFE. This means that the visits will not be announced to the public, so that they can take place undisturbed.
At 3.30 pm the Pope left Santa Marta and went to the Roman quarter of Ponte di Nona on the outskirts of the city, where he visited an apartment.
"Not less than two hours," Francis met with seven families founded by as many young men who had given up their priesthood in the past years.
According to the Vatican Press Office, they belong to the diocese of Rome where "they were pastors in different parishes of the city." One was from Madrid and another from Latin America, both of whom live in Rome. The seventh is from Sicily.
Pope Francis "gave his affections" to these men and their families, who "devoted themselves to priestly ministry in the parishes for several years," the Vatican said. "Loneliness, misunderstanding and fatigue because of the great effort and pastoral responsibility have brought their original decision for priesthood into a crisis." They would have spent "months and years of uncertainty and doubt," which often led them to make the wrong decision with the priesthood. Therefore, the decision to give up the priesthood and establish a family," says the press release of the Vatican.
"In this way, Pope Francis once more offered a sign of mercy to those who live in a situation of spiritual and material discomfort," and to make it clear that no one should remain without "the love and solidarity of their shepherds."
The Holy See did not announce the visit to the "Friday of Mercy", yet there is an interest in making the case public.
In the past, Francis had explained that the question of the married ex-priests "is on my agenda." There followed a series of signals around the "Amazon Workshop" that the "practice" of priesthood admission criteria could be changed while maintaining the teaching. The visit to seven former, married priests is also read as a signal that fits into this picture.
It is also astonishing the way the Vatican press office has expressed itself on the office of the priesthood.