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Vatican: Francis phone call doesn’t mark a change in Church teaching

Pope Francis (PA)

The Vatican has denied reports that Pope Francis indicated a change in Church teaching on Holy Communion for the remarried during a phone call with an Argentine woman.

Earlier this week Argentine news agency Telam reported that Jacqui Lisbona received the phone call after writing to the Pope to say that she had been refused Communion by her local priest, who objected to the fact that she was married to a divorced man. During the phone call, Pope Francis is reported to have said: “A divorcee who takes Communion is not doing anything wrong.”

Mrs Lisbona, who later called a Buenos Aires radio station to discuss the phone call, also claimed that in reference to her priest the Pontiff said, “There are some priests who are more papist than the Pope.” She also said that Francis told her he was “dealing with the issue” of Communion for the divorced and remarried.

In a statement released today, the Vatican said that it would not be releasing any information about the phone call and that “consequences relating to the teaching of the Church are not to be inferred from these occurrences”.

The statement said: “That which has been communicated in relation to this matter, outside the scope of personal relationships, and the consequent media amplification, cannot be confirmed as reliable, and is a source of misunderstanding and confusion.”

The world’s bishops are expected to discuss issue of Communion for the divorced and remarried at the family synod in Rome this October.


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