Monthly Archives: January 2017

Amoris Laetitia 304: Rules and Discernment

Shall we look at “Rules and Discernment”? In the previous paragraph, Pope Francis described as “dynamic” the nature of discernment in difficult situations. He is certainly correct. He calls upon the angelic doctor again to help us sort between essential … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 303: The Best We Can Do

Finishing up this discussion on “mitigating factors,” Pope Francis offers his own commentary here. As I’ve found throughout the document, it strikes me as typically Ignatian: 303. Recognizing the influence of such concrete factors, we can add that individual conscience … Continue reading

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Easter Vigil Litany of Saints

My first exposure to John Becker’s setting was at an RCIA conference in 1993. Other musicians there were going ga-ga over it. And I admit my first impression was that it was a big improvement over the chant version* I … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 302: Particular Mitigating Factors

In the last paragraph, Pope Francis called on the witness of saints and modern bishops to assist in making the case for factors that mitigate against a blanket approach to all instances of objective sin. He gets specific here, starting … Continue reading

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Reconciliation Lectionary: Matthew 22:34-40

A similar passage may be found in Mark, at 12:28-34. We covered that one on this post. The Lucan parallel is in verses 25-28 of that Gospel’s tenth chapter. That brief passage is not given as an option in the … Continue reading

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On My Bookshelf: Hamilton and Sondheim

For now, I live at least a half a continent away from the performances. As a consolation, the soundtrack is greatly enjoyable. And nearly so is this book, which arrived from Amazon last summer. Having a readable libretto is nice; some … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 301: Mitigating Factors In Pastoral Discernment

The third of five Chapter Eight themes examines “Mitigating factors in pastoral discernment.” In this paragraph and the two that follow we’ll wrestle with factors that mitigate against a single approach to all instances of divorce and remarriage. To begin … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 300: Encouraging Discernment

Critics of the pope sometimes like to employ the one-size-fits-all diagnosis. Like “adultery.” Even field hospitals employing triage don’t do things like that. And authentic accompaniment takes time. The synod bishops recognized this: 300. If we consider the immense variety … Continue reading

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Music Of the Trees 2: Hovhaness

A sonata for harp and guitar, “The Spirit of the Trees,” has long been on my cd shelf. This recording by Yolanda Kondonassi on harp and David Leisner on guitar is the only release of which I’m aware. Reviewer Steve Schwartz, … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 299: Looking At Integration

This paragraph has a lengthy quote from the final document of the synod bishops: 299. I am in agreement with the many Synod Fathers who observed that “the baptized who are divorced and civilly remarried need to be more fully … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 298: No Remarriage Is Quite the Same As Another

Regarding a remarried person, we cannot hope to summarize using one classification: 298. The divorced who have entered a new union, for example, can find themselves in a variety of situations, which should not be pigeonholed or fit into overly … Continue reading

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One More Month

Peace to all you readers, regulars, long-time, or occasional. After some discernment, I’ve decided to wrap up daily posts here when I get to the end of Amoris Laetitia in one more month. Assuming hackers don’t crack the code here, … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 297: Reaching Out, and Keeping Boundaries

The basic pastoral stance is that Catholics reach out to everyone: 297. It is a matter of reaching out to everyone, of needing to help each person find his or her proper way of participating in the ecclesial community and … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 296: The Discernment of “Irregular” Situations

Today, a pastoral thought from Pope Francis who leads out this topic which occupies paragraphs 296 through 300: The Discernment of “Irregular” Situations (Cf. Catechesis (24 June 2015)) 296. The Synod addressed various situations of weakness or imperfection. Here I … Continue reading

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Amoris Laetitia 294-295: More on Gradualness

Sometimes civil marriage is chosen because of situations other than opposition or indifference to religion: 294. “The choice of a civil marriage or, in many cases, of simple cohabitation, is often not motivated by prejudice or resistance to a sacramental … Continue reading

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