More than 90 Catholic leaders, including priests, scholars, and authors have signed an open letter asking Catholic cardinals and bishops to forbid the application of Fiducia Supplicans in their dioceses.
The controversial document Fiducia Supplicans (FS) is a declaration issued by the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith (DDF) which allows clergy to bless “irregular couples” – including what the Vatican document calls “same-sex couples.” This week’s “Filial Appeal to All Cardinals and Bishops of the Catholic Church” was released Friday on social media and in several Catholic publications. The appeal presents arguments as to why FS should not be applied anywhere.
“Twenty episcopal conferences, dozens of individual prelates, and even cardinals invested with the highest positions … have expressed an unequivocal condemnatory judgment,” the letter states. “Never in the history of the Catholic Church has a document of the Roman Magisterium experienced such a strong rejection.”
The signatories argue that “despite its explicit reaffirmation of the traditional doctrine of the Church on Marriage, it turns out that the pastoral practice that the document allows is in direct opposition to it.”
“It is evident that the practical message that this new declaration transmits is much more in line with the program and ideas of those who want to change the doctrine, than with the doctrine itself that the document claims to keep intact,” the letter points out.
The filial appeal also states that “the concrete sign” that the blessings FS condones gives “in front of the whole world” is
that “irregular couples”, extramarital and homosexual alike, according to the Catholic Church, would now be acceptable to God, precisely in the type of union that specifically configures them as couples. Nor does it make sense to separate “couple” from “union”, as card. Fernández has tried to do, since a couple is a couple because of the union that gives existence to it.
“The message that is effectively launched, and that the people of God, and the entire world, will inevitably register and are already registering,” the letter goes on, “is that: The Catholic Church has finally evolved, and now accepts homosexual unions, and, more generally, extramarital unions.”
The signatories then “fervently implore” cardinals and bishops to take two specific actions:
(1) Follow the brave example of so many brother bishops around the world: please forbid immediately the application of this document in your diocese.
(2) Please ask directly the Pope to urgently withdraw this unfortunate document, which is in contradiction with both Scripture and the universal and uninterrupted Tradition of the Church and which clearly produces a serious scandal.
The current list of signatories includes Catholic leaders from around the world, among them noted U.S. Catholic personalities such as Judie Brown (American Life League), Philip F. Lawler (editor of Catholic World News), Dr. Regis Martin (professor of theology at Franciscan University Steubenville), Fr. Gerald E. Murray, JCD (analyst at EWTN’s “World Over”), Dr. Michael Pakaluk (philosopher and professor of ethics at the Catholic University of America), Eric Sammons (editor of Crisis Magazine,) Fr. Robert Sirico (St. John Henry Newman Institute), Dr. Thomas Ward (John Paul II Academy of Human Life and the Family), and several others.
The original group has announced that pastors, clergy, scholars, professors, doctors, and other qualified individuals may submit their signatures to the list in the next two weeks after providing name, qualifications, position, and location by February 15 to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A definitive list of cumulative signatories will then be officially published on February 17.