Bishops of Angola and São Tomé order that no blessings be given to “irregular couples”

The bishops of the Episcopal Conference of Angola and São Tomé (CEAST) have expressed “perplexity” about blessings to “irregular couples” and have determined that they should not be carried out in these two countries because “they would create enormous scandal and confusion among the faithful”.
“With regard to informal blessings for ‘irregular couples’ (homosexuals), although it is a sacrament different from the liturgical blessing, we consider that, in our cultural and ecclesial context, it would create a huge scandal and confusion among the faithful, so we have determined that it should not be carried out in Angola and São Tomé,” they said in a statement.
The CEAST communiqué thus reacts to Pope Francis’ recent suggestion that same-sex couples should be blessed without transmitting “the wrong conception of marriage”, and also states that priests cannot become judges.
According to CEAST, their position is supported by the declaration ‘Fiducia Supplicans’, which they consider sufficient to guide the prudent and paternal discernment of ordained ministers” with regard to the blessings of same-sex couples, arguing further that “the document does not impose any uniform line”.
The bishops argue that the answer given by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, on February 22, 2021, on the subject, is a prudent choice, “because it guides us to accompany with pastoral charity the faithful who live in these complex situations and reminds us that the Church “does not and cannot bless sin.”
For the bishops of CEAST, the issue of greatest incidence in the pastoral context of Angola and São Tomé is access to the sacraments, “particularly the baptism of adults who, objectively, live in sin and who do not intend to amend or change their lives, as well as their godparents”.

About Geraldine Boechat 2734 Articles
Senior Editor for Medafrica Times and former journalist for Swiss National Television. former NGO team leader in Burundi and Somalia