Pavens juletale til kurien: Misbrukssakene er et kall til fornyelse

I en sterk tale til kurien den 20. desember oppsummerte pave Benedikt XVI året 2010. Den hellige far sa at misbrukssakene i Europa har "alvorlig skadet" og "fornedret" Kirken. Han oppfordret samtidig alle prelater til å grunne over hvorfor og hvordan dette kunne skje, og hva man kan lære av dette.

Det er tradisjon at paven møter den romerske kurien i midten av desember for å utveksle julehilsener. Pavens tale her regnes som en av de mest betydningsfulle uttalelser i løpet av året. Ikke overraskende viet Benedikt XVI i år store deler av talen til misbruksskandalene i Kirken. Her sa han blant annet:

We must accept this humiliation as an exhortation to truth and a call to renewal. Only the truth saves. We must ask ourselves what we can do to repair as much as possible the injustice that has occurred. We must ask ourselves what was wrong in our proclamation, in our whole way of living the Christian life, to allow such a thing to happen. We must discover a new resoluteness in faith and in doing good. We must be capable of doing penance. We must be determined to make every possible effort in priestly formation to prevent anything of the kind from happening again.

Paven fremhevet at disse klanderverdige gjerningene begått av prester samtidig må ses i en større sammenheng - samt i konteksten av tiden de oppsto i:

We are well aware of the particular gravity of this sin committed by priests and of our corresponding responsibility. But neither can we remain silent regarding the context of these times in which these events have come to light. There is a market in child pornography that seems in some way to be considered more and more normal by society. The psychological destruction of children, in which human persons are reduced to articles of merchandise, is a terrifying sign of the times. From Bishops of developing countries I hear again and again how sexual tourism threatens an entire generation and damages its freedom and its human dignity.

Han fortsatte med å vise hvordan en form for moralsk relativisme også fikk inntog i Kirken og katolsk teologi:

In order to resist these forces, we must turn our attention to their ideological foundations. In the 1970s, paedophilia was theorized as something fully in conformity with man and even with children. This, however, was part of a fundamental perversion of the concept of ethos. It was maintained - even within the realm of Catholic theology - that there is no such thing as evil in itself or good in itself. There is only a "better than" and a "worse than". Nothing is good or bad in itself. Everything depends on the circumstances and on the end in view. Anything can be good or also bad, depending upon purposes and circumstances. Morality is replaced by a calculus of consequences, and in the process it ceases to exist. The effects of such theories are evident today. Against them, Pope John Paul II, in his 1993 Encyclical Letter Veritatis Splendor, indicated with prophetic force in the great rational tradition of Christian ethos the essential and permanent foundations of moral action. Today, attention must be focussed anew on this text as a path in the formation of conscience. It is our responsibility to make these criteria audible and intelligible once more for people today as paths of true humanity, in the context of our paramount concern for mankind.

Dagens kristne må derfor be om at Gud puster nytt liv i Kirken:

Our faith too is often asleep. Let us ask him, then, to wake us from the sleep of a faith grown tired, and to restore to that faith the power to move mountains - that is, to order justly the affairs of the world.

Paven fremhevet hvordan presteåret - som ble markert i 2010 - har hjulpet klerikere til å gjenoppdage skjønnheten i sitt kall:

Excita, Domine, potentiam tuam, et veni: amid the great tribulations to which we have been exposed during the past year, this Advent prayer has frequently been in my mind and on my lips. We had begun the Year for Priests with great joy and, thank God, we were also able to conclude it with great gratitude, despite the fact that it unfolded so differently from the way we had expected. Among us priests and among the lay faithful, especially the young, there was a renewed awareness of what a great gift the Lord has entrusted to us in the priesthood of the Catholic Church. We realized afresh how beautiful it is that human beings are fully authorized to pronounce in God's name the word of forgiveness, and are thus able to change the world, to change life; we realized how beautiful it is that human beings may utter the words of consecration, through which the Lord draws a part of the world into himself, and so transforms it at one point in its very substance; we realized how beautiful it is to be able, with the Lord's strength, to be close to people in their joys and sufferings, in the important moments of their lives and in their dark times; how beautiful it is to have as one's life task not this or that, but simply human life itself - helping people to open themselves to God and to live from God.

Benedikt siterte også fra Den hellige Hildegard av Bingens visjoner for å illustrere de smertefulle misbrukssakene:

For my Bridegroom's wounds remain fresh and open as long as the wounds of men's sins continue to gape. And Christ's wounds remain open because of the sins of priests. They tear my robe, since they are violators of the Law, the Gospel and their own priesthood; they darken my cloak by neglecting, in every way, the precepts which they are meant to uphold; my shoes too are blackened, since priests do not keep to the straight paths of justice, which are hard and rugged, or set good examples to those beneath them. Nevertheless, in some of them I find the splendour of truth.'

Om sitt besøk til Kypros og fremskrittet i samtalene med Den ortodokse verden sa han følgende:

Even if full communion is not yet granted to us, we have nevertheless established with joy that the basic form of the ancient Church unites us profoundly with one another: the sacramental office of Bishops as the bearer of apostolic tradition, the reading of Scripture according to the hermeneutic of the Regula fidei, the understanding of Scripture in its manifold unity centred on Christ, developed under divine inspiration, and finally, our faith in the central place of the Eucharist in the Church's life. Thus we experienced a living encounter with the riches of the rites of the ancient Church that are also found within the Catholic Church. We celebrated the liturgy with Maronites and with Melchites, we celebrated in the Latin rite, we experienced moments of ecumenical prayer with the Orthodox, and we witnessed impressive manifestations of the rich Christian culture of the Christian East.

Den vanskelige situasjonen for kristne i Midtøsten ble også kommentert:

In the turmoil of recent years, the tradition of peaceful coexistence has been shattered and tensions and divisions have grown, with the result that we witness with increasing alarm acts of violence in which there is no longer any respect for what the other holds sacred, in which on the contrary the most elementary rules of humanity collapse. In the present situation, Christians are the most oppressed and tormented minority.

Den hellige far mintes også sin reise til Storbritannia, og påpekte igjen at et samfunn bygget på en kristen kultur ikke kan vokse uten kontakt med sine kristne røtter:

My thoughts go first of all to the encounter with the world of culture in Westminster Hall, an encounter in which awareness of shared responsibility at this moment in history created great attention which, in the final analysis, was directed to the question of truth and faith itself. It was evident to all that the Church has to make her own contribution to this debate. Alexis de Tocqueville, in his day, observed that democracy in America had become possible and had worked because there existed a fundamental moral consensus which, transcending individual denominations, united everyone. Only if there is such a consensus on the essentials can constitutions and law function. This fundamental consensus derived from the Christian heritage is at risk wherever its place, the place of moral reasoning, is taken by the purely instrumental rationality of which I spoke earlier.

Full tekst fra Vatikanradioen

KI - Katolsk Informasjonstjeneste (Oslo); Andreas Dingstad (21. desember 2010)

av Webmaster publisert 21.12.2010, sist endret 19.01.2011 - 15:59