Almost 500 British priests have signed a letter urging those attending this year’s family Synod to issue a “clear and firm proclamation” upholding Church teaching on marriage, reports The Catholic Herald.
In the letter, published in this week’s Catholic Herald, the priests write: “We wish, as Catholic priests, to re-state our unwavering fidelity to the traditional doctrines regarding marriage and the true meaning of human sexuality, founded on the Word of God and taught by the Church’s Magisterium for two millennia.”
Last year’s extraordinary Synod provoked heated debate on the question of whether remarried Catholics should be permitted to receive Holy Communion – a proposal presented by retired German Cardinal, Walter Kasper.
In what is thought to be an unprecedented step, 461 priests in England and Wales have joined together to urge Synod participants to resist the proposal.
They write: “We affirm the importance of upholding the Church’s traditional discipline regarding the reception of the sacraments, and that doctrine and practice remain firmly and inseparably in harmony.”
One signatory, who asked to remain anonymous, claimed there “has been a certain amount of pressure not to sign the letter and indeed a degree of intimidation from some senior Churchmen”.
Another, who also asked not to be named, said the issue of Communion for the remarried was “a matter of pastoral concern and fidelity to the Gospel.”