Tucho locutus est (again)
No. Yes. Maybe?
The first time Tucho “Heal Me with Your Mouth” Fernández made the Roman Pontiff contradict himself, he added his own “Roma locuta est”:
Thus, beyond the guidance provided above, no further responses should be expected about possible ways to regulate details or practicalities regarding blessings of this type.
As if the definitive nature of that statement wasn’t enough, he thought it necessary to clarify the clarification (again).
Yet again, a member Pope Francis’s inner circle, the late Cardinal Pell has been proved right:
Commentators of every school, if for different reasons, with the possible exception of Father Spadaro, SJ, agree that this pontificate is a disaster in many or most respects; a catastrophe… Previously it was: “Roma locuta. Causa finita est.” Today it is: “Roma loquitur. Confusio augetur.”
The good Irish priest Fr. Gerald Murray, a regular on EWTN put it plainly:
This is self contradictory garbage
— Gerald Murray (@GeraldMurray8) January 4, 2024
So what does the new clarification of the clarification say?
First, it says “calm down you!” to all critics, which includes Cardinals and bishops worldwide:
We are writing this Press Release to help clarify the reception of Fiducia supplicans, while recommending at the same time a full and calm reading of the Declaration so as to better understand its meaning and purpose (emphasis added).
Thank you, Tucho. Now that I’m calm, I’m sure everything will work out.
He says that the reactions of bishops has been “understandable” but “cannot be interpreted as doctrinal opposition, because the document is clear and definitive about marriage and sexuality” and then repeats the bones of orthodoxy that he threw at us, while contradicting the same in practice.
Tucho then takes a veiled shot at his predecessor, Cardinal Müller, who called the blessing of same-sex couples “blasphemy”:
Evidently, there is no room to distance ourselves doctrinally from this Declaration or to consider it heretical, contrary to the Tradition of the Church or blasphemous.
Please don’t insult our intelligence, Tucho. How much more condescending can you get? Your own predecessor is condemning this.
He then continues and summarises the text of Fiducia:
The Declaration contains a proposal for short and simple pastoral blessings (neither liturgical nor ritualised) of couples in irregular situations (but not of their unions), underlining that these are blessings without a liturgical format which neither approve nor justify the situation in which these people find themselves.
As we said before, the 2021 document disallowed blessing “same-sex couples” because these “couples” don’t even exist. Only individual persons can be blessed. But Fiducia claims that “same-sex couples” exist, and they can be blessed but “not their unions,” says the new clarification of the clarification.
What then is a couple? How does a “couple” come into existence except that they have some “union” which unites two individuals into a couple?
1 + 1 = 2.
Tucho is claiming you can have a “2” without a “plus” in between the two “1s.”
This is not explained, but the bare claim is asserted as a “development” in the original Fiducia.
Then Tucho outlines how we are to submit ourselves to what he has previously termed “the doctrine of the Holy Father”:
Some Bishops, for example, have established that each priest must carry out the work of discernment and that he may, however, perform these blessings only in private. None of this is problematic if it is expressed with due respect for a text signed and approved by the Supreme Pontiff himself, while attempting in some way to accommodate the reflection contained in it… Prudence and attention to the ecclesial context and to the local culture could allow for different methods of application, but not a total or definitive denial of this path that is proposed to priests (emphasis added).
OK, so in Tucho’s mind, we are all to submit ourselves to this nefarious document and implement it in some way, even though some bishops have flatly rejected any application whatsoever in their entire country. But here’s the rub: Tucho is claiming Papal power to impose this on every priest directly.
This is a blessing in disguise, really, because it brings every priest to decision time for or against Christ.
Tucho then issues a few condescending paragraphs to the African bishops, dismissing their concerns as merely cultural and legal issues:
It remains vital that these Episcopal Conferences do not support a doctrine different from that of the Declaration signed by the Pope, given that it is perennial doctrine, but rather that they recommend the need for study and discernment so as to act with pastoral prudence in such a context.
Can someone please tell the Vatican that the opposition from Africa to Fiducia supplicans is not because of antisodomy laws, politics or culture. It is to do with the blessing of homosexual couples. To keep maintaining this line makes the Vatican look out of touch and arrogant. https://t.co/A9lTTru6BA
— Catholic Sat (@CatholicSat) January 4, 2024
Then Tucho takes a step back to educate us all about how we are missing the real genius of his Fiducia dumpster fire:
The real novelty of this Declaration, the one that requires a generous effort of reception and from which no one should declare themselves excluded, is not the possibility of blessing couples in irregular situations. It is the invitation to distinguish between two different forms of blessings: “liturgical or ritualized” and “spontaneous or pastoral”.
Wow, did you catch that? First of all, don’t forget that “no one should declare themselves excluded” from receiving this genius document. But really, why is everyone so excited about blessing gay couples? Didn’t you notice my amazing distinction and development in the theology of blessing!
Somebody pop some champagne for this guy! Happy New Year everybody!
Later on Tucho makes an example out of what he wants to see:
[L]et us imagine that among a large number making a pilgrimage a couple of divorced people, now in a new union, say to the priest: “Please give us a blessing, we cannot find work, he is very ill, we do not have a home and life is becoming very difficult: may God help us!”.
In this case, the priest can recite a simple prayer like this: “Lord, look at these children of yours, grant them health, work, peace and mutual help. Free them from everything that contradicts your Gospel and allow them to live according to your will. Amen”. Then it concludes with the sign of the cross on each of the two persons.
We are talking about something that lasts about 10 or 15 seconds. Does it make sense to deny these kinds of blessings to these two people who ask for them? Is it not more appropriate to support their faith, whether it be small or great, to assist them in their weaknesses with a divine blessing, and to channel that openness to transcendence which could lead them to be more faithful to the Gospel? (emphasis in the original).
Let’s pause for a moment and realise the truth being used against truth in these paragraphs. First of all, as should be clear to anyone who claims to be a Christian, the utmost love and mercy should be shown to all sinners of whatever kind or group or number. But these paragraphs use this truth in order to promote an abuse of blessings. So let’s take ourselves out of the fantasy world that Tucho just constructed and think about the reality of this situation.
I’m a seventeen year old boy. My father has left my mother and “married” his mistress, leaving my siblings and my mother alone. I reject my father’s adultery and resist him to his face, and it breaks my heart in two. I hate my father who has destroyed our family by his infidelity. My father tries to get me to accept his adultery, but I refuse. I will never accept his mistress as his wife.
Then my father, trying to justify himself, goes on a pilgrimage with his mistress “wife.” He goes to the priest and asks for a blessing, and he gives it to them, living in this adulterous union. I am horrified and scandalised by this priest, who has just given his blessing to my father’s infidelity. No doubt, my father feels a sense of relief to get this blessing, knowing that, if he cannot get approval for his adultery from his son, at least he can get this blessing from a priest.
Do any children of a divorced parents relate to this? How would you feel if a priest blessed your parent and his new “spouse” like this? Would you feel “accompanied”? But what does Tucho have to say to this young boy?
We will all have to become accustomed to accepting the fact that, if a priest gives this type of simple blessings, he is not a heretic, he is not ratifying anything nor is he denying Catholic doctrine.
Thank you, Tucho. Now that I’m “accompanied,” I can drink some of that champagne and toast your genius distinctions in the theology of blessings.
It’s a good thing Jesus is on the throne.
Otherwise I’d be worried.