When a letter is sent and it is desired to have proof that it has been received, a simple additional service called “acknowledgment of receipt” is contracted. But in order for this epistolary communication to become effective, basic premises must be met, such as that the postal company creates the necessary channels to guarantee that the letter will reach its addressee, that the addressee is willing to keep the letter and sign. as you received it and, lastly, very obvious but not least, that you open and read the letter.
What is this short and seemingly unnecessary introduction to? Those of us who dedicate ourselves to the dissemination of the Bible, to pastoral animation with the Word of God, tend to repeat, I don’t know if too many times, that the Bible is a set of letters that God has written to us but that requires us to open and read it. This new obviousness (which should not be so obvious if we take into account how little is opened and read) can also be applied, for example, to the letters that the Pope writes us in the form of an encyclical or exhortation. < / h5>

The last one, a post-synodal apostolic exhortation of Pope Francis, bears the title Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love) and deals with the family. In some way we can say that this proposal takes the witness left by John Paul II with Familiaris Consortio. That exhortation was also the fruit of post-synodal reflection. But it is evident, and it could not be otherwise, that the difference of thirty-five years leaves us as a result that the family reality of then and now is not the same. Much, much has changed since then.
Well, first of all we have to say that it is not worth neglecting the reflection of Pope Francis, arguing that John Paul II already wrote about it. From that reductionist perspective, no pope could deal with an issue previously dealt with by another pope. It is simply ridiculous not to accept, open and read the Amoris Laetitia letter because Familiaris Consortio already exists.
But where we are going… For communication to be really effective, confusion over who the letter is addressed to must be avoided. Yes, I know that it is evident that an apostolic exhortation is written for everyone. But I also realize that there has been a certain distortion about the unique recipients of the famous chapter 8.
Many have thought and opined that the Pope intended to deal with the hitherto called “irregular families”: On those who do wrong, on what they do wrong, on whether because they do wrong they cannot receive Communion…
That is confusing the recipient and making communication impossible. Because if we read well (we could even say that it would be enough simply to read, since many opinions are made from rumors and press headlines), then well if we read that chapter 8 we will realize that what it is about is how it should be react the ecclesial community to what the Pope, instead of “in an irregular situation”, calls “fragility”.
That is to say, that “accompany, discern and integrate” of the title of the chapter goes for us. Let us stop looking at how those who are plunged in a situation of fragility behave, many times it occurs without the need for culprits, and let us examine how we accompany and integrate our brothers.
In short, it is that we have received a letter, a communication, which requires accepting it, reading it and, above all, giving it an “acknowledgment of receipt”. Recognize that all this also goes with me. And whoever is standing, watch not fall. Or rather, whoever thinks he is standing, see if he is not stepping on his brother in need of understanding, mercy and forgiveness.
If we remember we can remember the typical repellent child, know-it-all, of the class that not only wanted to have the best grade, but also needed that others did not give those good grades. He would be like the famous eldest son in the parable, who, more than very good, pretended to appear so in contrast to his little brother. Or Jonah, who did not accept that God was compassionate to the repentant inhabitants of Nineveh.
The Pope is calling us not to be repellent and to realize that my lack of mercy is worse than the frailty of my brothers. A good understanding …

Quique Fernandez

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