CV NEWS FEED // A Dutch Bishop issued a strong statement on December 21 asking Pope Francis to further clarify the document on blessings to same sex couples recently issued by the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith (DDF), arguing that the document is “not pastoral” but “rather unloving.”
Auxiliary Bishop Robert Gerardus Mutsaerts of ’s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands, and a known critic of the current pontificate, issued a long statement in his blog “Paarse Pepers” (Purple Peppers) claiming that the Declaration of the DDF Fiducia Supplicans suffers from “diabolical ambiguity.”
In his post, originally in Dutch, Mutsaerts acknowledges that the DDF’s note “can be considered a reaction to formal blessings of gay couples in Germany,” but “then come the confusing passages in the (DDF) statement.”
“This is where it goes wrong in Fiducia Supplicans,” he writes:
A gay Christian can be blessed individually. But one cannot bless a gay relationship, because the Church characterizes it as disordered, or sinful. This disordered character is affirmed, but nevertheless the declaration says that blessing such relationships is a possibility. In other words, blessing a sinful relationship is possible. God giving His blessing on a sin, it is a travesty!
Mutsaerts highlights that in Fiducia Supplicans
there is no reference to Church Fathers, to documents of Popes, to writings of theologians, but almost exclusively to earlier documents of Pope Francis himself. Fiducia Supplicans want to be a pastoral outreach, but what the declaration understands by blessing is totally blurry.
“Nowhere in the declaration is there a call to repentance, or reference to truth,” Mutsaerts contends. “It does not contain a call for LGTBQ couples to live in abstinence in accordance with God’s plan in which sexuality is reserved for a man/woman relationship.”
The Dutch bishop also argues that “in homosexual relationships one begins to identify sin and sinner. One identifies as [a] gay Christian. There is no such thing. Neither is there such a thing as an alcoholic Christian. No, you are a Christian with an alcohol problem, you are a Christian with a homosexual orientation.”
“This is precisely the ambiguity of Fiducia Supplicans: it does not want to name the sinful nature,” he continues. “And this is also what the LGTBQ community does not want. They demand that not them, but that the Church must change.” Therefore, he writes, “this is not pastoral, nor is it merciful, but rather unloving.”
Mutsaerts concludes, “Holy Father, please, be clear! You are not helping anyone with this! No one at all!”