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Old 15th February 2017, 05:16 PM
Brother Brother is offline
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,845
Default Cardinal: Remarried can take Communion if continence is ‘impossible’

... he cites the case of a woman who knows that leaving a man and his children would leave them bereft. “If, in fact, she left the union … the children would be without a mother. Leaving the union would mean, therefore, not fulfilling a moral duty towards innocent persons.” Here, he says, it might be impossible to avoid having sex.

Not sure if the Cardinal says 'impossible' figurative or literally. Continence is possible with God's grace, but hopefully his book also explains objective vs actual mortal sin and the difference between dogma and discipline.
John 3:27; John 15:5; Matthew 19:26
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Old 15th February 2017, 08:17 PM
Ron Conte Ron Conte is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 12,591

The idea that continence is "impossible" is refuted by magisterial teaching:

42. It will be objected that such an abstention is impossible, that such a heroism is asking too much. You will hear this objection raised; you will read it everywhere. Even those who should be in a position to judge very differently, by reason of either their duties or their qualifications, are ever ready to bring forward the following argument: "No one is obliged to do what is impossible, and it may be presumed that no reasonable legislator can will his law to oblige to the point of impossibility. But, for husbands and wives, long periods of abstention are impossible. Therefore they are not obliged to abstain; Divine law cannot have this meaning."

43. In such a manner, from partially true premises, one arrives at a false conclusion. To convince oneself of this, it suffices to invert the terms of the argument: "God does not oblige anyone to do what is impossible. But God obliges husband and wife to abstinence if their union cannot be completed according to the laws of nature. Therefore, in this case, abstinence is possible." To confirm this argument, there can be brought forward the doctrine of the Council of Trent, which teaches, in the chapter on that observance which is necessary and possible, in reference to a passage from St. Augustine: "God does not command the impossible, but when He commands, He warns you to do what you can, and to ask for the grace for what you cannot do, and He helps you so that you may be able". [Council of Trent, Session 6, Chapter II, Denzinger, n. 804; St. Augustine, On Nature and Grace, chapter 43, n. 50.]

44. Do not be disturbed, therefore, in the practice of your profession and apostolate, by this grand talk of impossibility. Do not be disturbed in your internal judgment, nor in your external conduct. Never lend yourselves to anything which is contrary to the law of God and to your Christian conscience! It would be a wrong toward men and women of our age to judge them incapable of continuous heroism. Nowadays, for many a reason, -- perhaps constrained by dire necessity, or even at times oppressed by injustice -- heroism is exercised to a degree and to an extent that, in the past, would have been thought impossible. Why, then, if circumstances truly demand it, should this heroism stop at the limits prescribed by the passions and the inclinations of nature? It is clear: he who does not want to master himself is not able to do so, and he who wishes to master himself, relying only upon his own powers, without sincerely and perseveringly seeking help, will be miserably deceived.

The above is quoted from Address to Midwives, Pope Pius XII, 1951.
Ron Conte
Roman Catholic theologian
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