The Archbishop of Munich says Cardinal Muller, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith 'cannot stop the discussions' about remarried divorcees and related questions to be addressed at next year's Synod, reports Vatican Insider.
German cardinal Reinhard Marx, who is Archbishop of Munich and a member of the Council of eight cardinals called to advise Pope Francis, issued a statement last Thursday at the end of a meeting held by the Freising Bishops’ Conference which groups together bishops from the German region of Bavaria.
The comment came in response to a long article written by the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Archbishop Gerhard Müller, recently published in Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano. The article discussed the indissolubility of marriage which rejected outright the possibility of the abandoned spouse to remarry after a period of penance, which is allowed in the Orthodox Church.
Some observers welcomed the article, defining it as 'a protective fence' around Francis’s 'field hospital.' This categorical rejection of Orthodox practice in relation to re-marriage came after the Pope himself had mentioned the subject in his interview with journalists on the return flight from Rio last July.
It later emerged that Cardinal Müller’s letter was neither new nor had it been written in light of Francis’ remarks. It had in fact already been published in Tagespost last 15 June before Francis issued his statement.
The fact that this message of firm rejection of Orthodox practices on remarriage was published again, unaltered, after the Pope’s statement on the flight back from Rio, was seen by many as final confirmation that the Catholic Church would not be reconsidering or reforming its rules regarding remarried divorcees.