A brand new doc produced by the Worldwide Theological Fee (ITC) displays on the connection between the Catholic religion and the sacraments, particularly the sacraments of initiation and the sacrament of Matrimony.
By Christopher Wells
The Worldwide Theological Fee (ITC) has issued a brand new doc learning the connection between religion and the sacraments.
The sacramental nature of the religion
Entitled “The Reciprocity between Faith and Sacraments in the Sacramental Economy”, the brand new doc goals at contributing to a deeper understanding of the sacramental nature of the religion, and to a revitalization of sacramental ministry. Particularly, it speaks to the issue of so-called “baptized non-believers” – those that have obtained the sacrament of Baptism, however who don’t possess the religion in a significant sense.
The ITC seeks to deal with this subject by offering a doctrinal reflection on the importance of the religion for the sacraments, in addition to proposing sensible pastoral indications for these in ministry.
The brand new doc is split into 5 chapters. The primary chapter elaborates the issue, and explains the choice to deal with the sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Affirmation, Eucharist), and the sacrament of Matrimony.
Religion and sacraments in God’s plan of salvation
The second chapter “constitutes the true coronary heart of the doc”, based on Jesuit Father Gabino Uríbarri Bilbao, who chaired the sub-commission liable for producing the doc. It gives a doctrinal basis for the “constitutive reciprocity between the religion and the sacraments” – that’s, a doctrinal rationalization for why religion is essentially sacramental, and why the sacraments are essentially sure up with real religion. The chapter explains the sacramental character of the divine plan for salvation, the “financial system of salvation”; after which appears particularly at how religion and sacraments are associated to 1 one other.
Particularly, the doc emphasizes that the sacramental financial system, as a result of it’s incarnational, is dialogical: that’s, in His plan for salvation, God takes the initiative, however human beings should additionally reply to that initiative. Right here the ITC intends to keep away from each an “ethereal” conception of religion that’s indifferent from the sacraments, and a conception of the sacraments disconnected from religion.
The third and fourth chapters concern how religion is said to specific sacraments. Within the third chapter, the ITC appears on the sacraments of Christian initiation, emphasizing the need of religion for a fruitful reception of the sacraments.
Marriages between “baptized non-believers”
The chapter on marriage is the longest part of the doc. On the one hand, it follows an analogous plan because the consideration of the opposite sacraments, trying on the foundations of the connection with religion based mostly on Scripture and Custom.
However in gentle of the actual nature of marriage, it additionally emphasizes the query of the connection between religion and ends of marriage; and makes an attempt to cope with the issue of marriage between “baptized non-believers”. Recognizing the significance of an accurate understanding of the character of marriage, and of the anthropological imaginative and prescient on which it’s based mostly, it proposes the thesis that the overall absence of non-public religion makes the validity of sacramental marriage uncertain if this understanding is missing. That’s, such a lack of knowledge might compromise the minimal intention of contracting a pure marriage, during which case a sacrament likewise couldn’t happen.
With this thesis the ITC intends to keep away from the errors of a “sacramental automatism” that ignores private religion; and an elitism that makes extreme calls for with regard to the diploma of religion mandatory for the legitimate reception of the sacrament.
A closing chapter summarizes the sacramental nature of the religion, and considers the importance of the sacramental order as a complete.
“The Reciprocity between Religion and Sacraments within the Sacramental Financial system” was approved for publication by the President of the Worldwide Theological Fee, the Prefect for the Congregation for the Religion, Cardinal Luis Ladaria Ferrer, SJ, after having obtained the beneficial opinion of Pope Francis.