Interviewed by the Newspaper, the now 90-year-old former president of the CEI, as expected, expressed himself in line with the magisterium of the Holy Roman Church.
The teaching of the Church is irrevocable
“ The Church does not have the power to bless same-sex unions – said the cardinal -. In fact, only what is in conformity with God’s plans can be blessed, not what is contrary to them, such as unions between persons of the same sex ”.
Ruini’s reference is to the day of blessing of de facto couples , convened for Monday 10 May , which was joined by several dozen parish priests and even some bishops throughout Germany. The German Bishops’ Conference, for its part, did not openly blame the initiative, limiting itself to defining it as inappropriate , after an initial possibilistic attitude.
Cardinal Ruini highlighted the contradictions that are emerging in the heart of the German church, which in recent weeks is facing its synodal assembly. At the center of the debate, there are very delicate issues, such as the female priesthood, the abolition of compulsory celibacy and Catholic-Protestant intercommunion. Too radical innovations could lead to a “schism”. This word, which evokes scenarios centuries away, was also disturbed by Ruini. “I do not deny, therefore, that there is a risk of schism, but I trust that, with God’s help, it can be overcome”, said the cardinal.
The sinner is blessed, not the sin
“ People can certainly be blessed, but because they are converted , not because they are confirmed in their sin – said Ruini -. God himself blesses sinful man so that he allows himself to be changed by him, but he cannot bless sin ”. It is not, the cardinal pointed out, something ” that the Church has decided not to do ” but something ” that the Church cannot do “.
History is a teacher of life and, in this regard, Ruini has made some distinctions. A certain mentality of the past is certainly to be rejected: think of the ” times of Queen Victoria “, in which ” homosexuality was a serious crime and then, for a long time to come, homosexuals were victims of hateful discrimination “.
Therefore, ” the Church today is opposed to any unjust discrimination against homosexual people and wants them to be received in the Christian community with respect and delicacy “, Ruini reiterated. Nevertheless, the Church still does not accept the ” claim of the rights of homosexual people ” and the ” so-called gay pride “, even at the cost of being branded as ” too backward and now impossible “.
The Church’s sense of unity should not be wasted
The point is that the ” moral evaluation of homosexual relationships and the unions that involve them ” must be taken into account . The ” Sacred Scripture “, the ” Old and New Testament ” and the ” ecclesial tradition ” teach that ” homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered, because they are not suitable for transmitting life and not based on a true emotional and sexual complementarity “. For this reason, these acts ” in no case can they be approved “.
This ” negative judgment “, continued the cardinal, ” concerns behavior considered in itself, not the subjective responsibility of people, which in any case must be respected and welcomed “.
Finally, Ruini hopes ” with all my heart that there will be no schism and I pray for this “. He then cited the letter To the people of God who are on their way in Germany , in which Pope Francis ” asks, among other things, to always preserve the sense of the Church and the bond with the universal Church “. Words that ” offer a precious criterion and orientation ” concluded the cardinal.