John Allen hunts down the Mexican bishops....from John Allen:
Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera of Mexico City, the place where recent debates over communion for pro-choice Catholic politicians formed the background to Benedict XVI’s Wednesday comments aboard the papal plane, said today that the pope “only repeated what we bishops already had said.”
...Rivera told NCR that he did not know what impact the pope’s comments have had in Mexico City, because he’s been in Brazil since the story broke. He insisted, however, that Benedict’s statement did not amount to “anything new,” but was rather a repetition of the position taken in Mexico City.
On April 24, legislators in Mexico City voted to legalize abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy in the city’s public hospitals. The law does not require private hospitals or clinics to perform abortions.
At the time, the Archdiocese of Mexico City issued a statement indicating that doctors and nurses who perform abortions, as well as the lawmakers who support abortion, were to be considered excommunicated. Pressed by reporters at the time, Rivera said that he had not excommunicated anyone, nor did he plan to do so.
Sources said what Rivera meant is that by virtue of their involvement in abortion, the doctors, nurses and lawmakers had instead excommunicated themselves.
By way of inference, Rivera's response today seemed to mean that Benedict had affirmed this position.
Saturday, May 12, 2007
From Asia News Italy:
“The mission entrusted to us as teachers of the faith,” the Pope said, “consists in recalling, in the words of the Apostle of the Gentiles, that our Saviour “desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim 2:4). This, and nothing else, is the purpose of the Church: the salvation of individual souls. For this reason the Father sent his Son, and in the Lord’s own words transmitted to us in the Gospel of Saint John, ‘as the Father has sent me, even so I send you’ (Jn 20:21). Hence, the mandate to preach the Gospel”.
And he points out a fundamental problem that exists within the Church,
This means paying special attention to the preparation of the faithful. “Those who are most vulnerable to the aggressive proselytizing of sects—a just cause for concern—and those who are incapable of resisting the onslaught of agnosticism, relativism and secularization are generally the baptized who remain insufficiently evangelized; they are easily influenced because their faith is weak, confused, easily shaken and naive, despite their innate religiosity.” In this case, “no effort should be spared in seeking out those Catholics who have fallen away and those who know little or nothing of Jesus Christ”.
It is a great embarassment to me that someone can be a Catholic and know, as the Pope says "little or nothing of Jesus Christ"--this is the crisis that has invaded Catholicism, throughout the world. Do you think those pro-choice politicians who are Catholic know who Jesus Christ is? I doubt it.
In his talk the pope reiterated the concern that church has for the poor and also for the retention of priests.